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Session: Aeon's End:: Reeve and Brama take on the Horde Crone

Tue, 06 Dec 2016 17:47:54 +0000

by pluimc

My wife and I were finally pull out the game on Sunday, and having battled Rageborne and Crooked Mask many times with the PnP, we decided to try something new. I knew to stay away from the Wayward one until we get a little more experience under our belts, but we still wanted a challenge so we decided upon Horde Crone.

I won't list the whole market we set out, but some of the key cards were:
Combustion (deals 2 damage to one minion, and then 2 damage to another minion or the Nemesis)
Focusing Orb (Focus any player's breach OR Destroy this. Gravehold gains 3 life)
Void Bond (Deal 3 damage. You may cast any player's prepped spell)

I played as Reeve, and my wife played as Brama. My wife chose Brama mainly because we found that with Crooked Mask we could not beat it without a way to heal each other, and the extra damage done to Gravehold after exhaustion was brutal.

On my first turn, I was able to use Reeve's Obsidian Shard to grab a Combustion early on. This turned out to be crucial to being able to deal with the Troggs that came from the Nemesis (perhaps a little too powerful). As the game progressed, we each had 2 Combustions in each of our decks, and we were able between the 2 of us to regularly have one prepped.

Also, using the Focusing Orb we were able to quickly get breaches 3 and 4 open so our sparks were more useful in dealing with the Troggs.

We also got some pretty lucky draws from the Trogg Deck where very rarely did the many "Unleash Twice" cards pull out 2 of the same Troggs, so they never really did much damage. In the end, we were able to defeat the Horde Crone without either of us going below 5 health (Brama used her power once on each player), and without Gravehold going below 15 (with Focusing Orb we were able to raise it back up to 21).

All in all, Horde Crone was very fun, but seemed a little too easy with Combustion in the market. We'll definitely be playing the Horde Crone again, and may take Combustion out, or may increase the Trogg life to 3 so Combustion is not as effective until it gets prepped in breach 3 or 4.

Session: Letters from Whitechapel:: Letters from Japan Game 06: Scatter Plot

Tue, 06 Dec 2016 17:37:23 +0000

by n107 It should come as no surprise that I suggested playing a game to my wife and LfW hit the table again. This has become her favorite game by far. Oddly enough, I won't argue against playing it either. Dramatis PersonaeJack the Ripper - (me)Investigators - (The Missus)Hideout: Location 188Night One: HellHead of the Investigation: The MissusA Corpse on the Sidewalk: Location 48Time of the Crime: Space III waited once, as is custom for me, wanting to keep the options for the future open. When The Missus moved one Wretched pawn to Location 48, I thought that was as good as any spot to make my kill. Night One: HuntingI decided not to make a direct break for my hideout, wanting to cause as much confusion as possible. So instead of heading south, I went east to Location 29 then 66 and 67. As the police finally came up into that area, I decided to use an Alley to sneak behind one of the coppers to Location 84, which had just been searched. After that, my trail was discovered in the previous three spaces as I took a Coach to Locations 100 then 170, a spectacular distance jump. The Missus found my trail had gone into 100 while I took another Coach to Locations 181 then 191. By this point, I had already put enough distance between her Investigators gathering near the center of the map that they never got farther down south to rediscover my trail as I crept to Location 190 and called it a night on Space 9 as I reached home at 188. The only thing The Missus could discern was that I was definitely south of the center, but from there... she had no clue. Night Two: HellHead of the Investigation: The MissusA Corpse on the Sidewalk: Location 4Time of the Crime: Space IIOnce again I decided to wait and to kill in relatively the same area of the map as before. I thought it couldn't hurt to try a repeat of my earlier success. Night Two: HuntingI started my retreat to my hideout walking through Locations 11 then 2. I had made a mistake as I should have just gone to 36, as I did on the next round, but wasted a turn going north for no reason. It's little mistakes like this that could cost a man the game...The Missus sent nearly all of her Detectives up north to try to find my path. She went into side streets and tried dragging a net from the east to the west, thinking I might follow the same path as on Night One. So far she had been unlucky. I quickly moved to Locations 26 and 79, all while The Missus kept coming up empty handed in her search. Having a clear shot south to my hideout, I called a Coach and raced through Locations 97 and 117 then took a second Coach to 150 and 176. By now, her Investigators had reached the area directly around the scene of the crime and she found a Clue at 11 and 36, informing her that I had gone west, which was why she didn't find anything in her meticulous crawl from the south-east. Unfortunately for her it was too late as the next round, I reached home and ended the chase for the night.This frustrated the police to no end as the insignificant amount of Clues found this time around did nothing to illuminate my final destination when compared with what was known from Night One. Night Three: HellHead of the Investigation: The MissusA Corpse on the Sidewalk: Locations 84/149Time of the Crime: Space IAnd now for the Double Event, the night that sloppy decisions have resulted in instant losses in the past. This was the one night, more than the others, that I had to play my best and not screw up. I decided not to wait and took out my Stride-Eddowes combination in one fail swoop, ending on Location 149....Which immediately I regretted as I forgot I had wanted to leave 149 open for Night Four (assuming I'd get that far) as it was just two spaces away from my hideout. *sigh* So much for not making mistakes.Night Three: HuntingUnfortunately for me, the police also had presence on that western edge of the board, but the bulk was near the middle where most of the Clues had been discovered on Night One. However, none of the police were close enough to make an [...]

Session: Great Western Trail:: 4 games in.....2 player v 3 player

Tue, 06 Dec 2016 15:08:58 +0000

by FrankBradshaw

Hey all - last night I had my first 3 player game of this v my last three games have been 2 player. For me personally it was a completely different experience.

Last night I think my opponents got the feeling that I didn't enjoy the game (I did say I didn't enjoy it with three! (image) ) but mulling it over I was trying to put my finger on what it was that I came a cropper of.

Game one with myself and my mate Garry who owns the game and I won a heavy victory much to my own surprise. But winning aside it was very enjoyable to play - the grand scheme of getting a good hand to the end of the trail felt more like playing against the game whilst the opponent did the same. I came out on top so much the better, but it felt more a victory against the game.

Game two again just two of us, this time Garry tried another strategy and it was a close win to him. Again it felt like it was us against the game and a bit against each other. We both loved the two games thus far, win lose or draw. The micro events of the tiles, working out the best strategy, being at the right place at the right time with the right people and money.

We loved it so much so that week 3 we played again and this time I gained the upper hand. (Best of 5... no I'll stick! (image) )

My fellow players will tell you that I'm not a great player - my mental arithmetic isn't brilliant and I can be a little slow and strategy wise I'm no Julius Ceaser but each time I loved the game.

Then last night we played 3 player - again myself, Garry and long time gaming friend Matt. This time the game felt a grind! I wasn't making any traction and was floundering badly! I ended up with a poor 32 vs the others in the 90s and over 100!

I think for me the 2 player version is my sweet spot because of the way the mechanics play to two players each trying to out do the game and in doing so coming out with higher points than the other. Just my take on it.

With 3 players it felt much more cut throat and harder to manage - fighting the game and the opponents.

Still a great game but two very different experiences.


Session: Rise and Decline of the Third Reich:: To Bremen or Not to Bremen...that is the Question: Turn 2 - 1939 Fall Allies

Tue, 06 Dec 2016 12:50:46 +0000

by OU_Sooner Italy ConsiderationsAnytime that Italy declares war on the first turn she cannot, alone, defend herself properly (except if she has Variant #9 and even then she has to be careful). This always means that if Italy doesn’t want to die from an allied double turn that the German player will have to commit serious resources to Italy on the Fall 1939 turn in order to defend Italy. In this case, Rokeater defended Italy properly. Here is why: with Marseille having fallen to Italian hands already, the allies cannot sea transport into Marseille. The allies can’t get into Italy through northern Italy on the Fall 1939 turn. Further, if the allies kill the Italian tank in Fall and then build in SE France, the allies will not make it into Rome on the Winter turn even with exploitation. They’d almost make it that far, but not quite. The Axis would then get a double turn and kill off the threat and, most likely, take out France in a swift move while the French are overextended. What about if the allies try to go through the beach hexes in Italy? Well, the beach hex in NE Italy is defended heavily with ground and air. The allies will lose there. The allies can get ashore near Naples, but if they want to get into Rome then during exploitation they must attack a 3-3 infantry that would be doubled. Further, the allies can’t get air power in, and the Italian air is in range. So, the allies will not win the exploitation battle against the 3-3. Without that the allies will not make it into Rome. Poland ConsiderationsWhile Rokeater’s maneuver in Poland works wonders without serious risk of loss, it has a drawback. In order for it to work properly, Germany must be able to get enough factors in Poland to guarantee that Poland loses 2 units from axis attrition in Winter so that Germany can, that same turn, sea transport the tank from Kiel to northern Germany and then move it during combat movement into the unoccupied Polish capital. Basically, doing Rokeater’s move in Poland requires Germany to have more units in the East than a traditional defeat Poland in one turn gambit. The drawback: more units required in the east means possibly an inadequate defense in the west.Holes in Germany’s western defenseThe extra units required in Poland coupled with Germany having to help defend Italy meant there HAD to be holes in western Germany. There are. The question was, how to best exploit it, and would it be worth the risks.The question of how to exploit Germany in the west is why I named this session report “To Bremen or Not to Bremen…That is the Question”. I ultimately decided to try the audacious plan of attacking Bremen with my entire GB fleet. But to do that, I had to first get everything in order. France Over-extendedJust as Italy can get over-extended and be defeated to an allied double turn, so can France. France does not have enough units to defend herself properly. In my opinion, if France goes on some sort of offensive she is going to be having units outside of France, which means France will fall very quickly unless the allies can guarantee that getting extended will not mean France dies. If you are the allies you also have to be very careful not to let the axis have a double turn or else France will fall. If the allies want any chance of winning, then France has to survive as long as possible. So don’t get overextended with French units or France will fall quickly in this game.Strategy OptionsOption 1: Attrition the Italian tankI could attrition the Italian tank with that French tank. The axis will not choose to lose the Italian tank (the axis would lose some RCs). The allies might, but might not roll well. Meaning, who knows if the axis will be forced to retreat a hex or not. If the allies roll badly, then the Italian tank stays put which means the units in SE France are still isolated and they die. Further, if the Italian tank is not forced to move, then those French spaces are out of supply. [...]

Session: SeaFall:: Game 4 (Box 2+3 unlocked) [spoilers tagged]

Tue, 06 Dec 2016 12:16:46 +0000

by TheRealStupid Our group played through Pandemic Legacy with five players - we had our normal group of four, but whenever one player couldn't make a session, we had a dedicated "filler" player who would rotate in and out. It was with this dedicated group of five that we are playing Seafall. Note this is a continuation of our playthrough. Links to the prior session report are first session [thread=24282179]second session[/thread]We unlocked the second chest at the end of our third game, and the third box during this session. This report will include spoilers, but I will do my best to tag any information that would affect decisions of first-time players. Unfortunately, because the strategies of the winning player would give away a lot of this, there will likely be less information than spoiler in this post.Our players, in order from lowest to highest scores at the outset of the game:-The “efficient” Lord, who, up until now, had been scraping by mostly raiding islands. He has not achieved a single milestone to date, and who’s plans are routinely thwarted by other players one turn earlier, or neglects that the rules prevent him from achieving what he intended. On more than one occasion has been completely successful in his endeavors, only to find that they provide absolutely zero benefit – for example, raiding an island when his holds were already full, or attacking another player who has nothing to plunder.-The Baron, who, has been a clear contender in our prior games, consistently holding third place, and only was pushed down to his current status by the meteoric rise of the Duke.-The Merchant, who despite his title will be known by this honorific in all of my future reports. He was playing as the Count in this game, having spung up from the lowly Lord role to only a mere three Honor from the lead in a single game!-The Duke (me) who was tied for the lead, but elected to NOT sit in the Prince chair.-The Prince, who along with the Baron and myself, were treating the game as an exploration game.Going into this game, it was pretty well understood that [o] the Merchant was going to win, and win big. Two of the milestones that were unlocked in box 2 (colonies) related directly to gold and arbitrage, and our Merchant was uniquely equipped to play that role. As expected, during the session, he ended up claiming the first milestone (sell 30+ gold of items in a single turn) on turn 3 and a mere three turns later he had his second (60+ gold in the vault). After that it was a simple matter of buying a couple of treasures (which he could easily afford) and the game was ended.[/o]More interestingly though, was the leftover “unlock” milestone from box 1 [o]to explore a Tomb. Prior to the start of the game, I had looked at the numbers and did not see any way for this to happen. We assumed that the “skull” symbols were tombs, and the lowest value “skull” was an 11 exploration. With an exploration value of 4 on our best ships, plus one more from a supporting ship, that was still less than half of the requirement, so it seemed unlikely to happen. What I did not know at the start was that the Baron had an Advisor that granted a massive +7 to exploration endeavors. 4 plus 7, plus support, plus a couple of fortune tokens and it was certainly within reach![/o]This led to our first “war”.The Prince, Duke and Baron all had vessels fast enough and skilled enough to make the attempt. The only island that had a valid site was Buttseam Island (so named due to its location on the gameboard fold), located six hexes out of the harbor. The Baron took advantage of a +2 Sail event on the first turn to park his fastest ship on that locale. The Duke did not make a play for the milestone, still (erroneously) thinking it was unobtainable. The Prince launched an all-out attack on the Baron’s homeland. The attack was eminently successful, and the Renowned Explorer “Gordon” was captured by the Prince. The Prince used his [...]

Session: The Italian Campaign: Salerno:: Approach to the Winterline Session 4

Tue, 06 Dec 2016 12:01:14 +0000

by ropey Turn 2We enter the Command Phase. Allies receive 9 CPs, Germans 4. Command Control is checked. The only units likely to have an issue are the ISO regiment of 45th ID and the lead Brigade of 7th AD. Both are within the HQ command radius so are in command.The initiative bid may be more complex this turn. The Allied player has two HQs (7th AD and 34th ID) on their fatigued side so are limited in what they can do – no assaults for them. Additionally, all Allied HQs have a SL so weaker generated strengths. Some of the divisions are out of contact with the retreating Germans, and there is also the issue of bridges needing to be repaired which will slow down any follow up. Another consideration is how much time the Allies want to pass – ie, what intensity of action. Obviously the more time they have to break the line the better, but this means a low initiative bid. On the other hand, they don’t necessarily want the German to have the initiative as they may move forward again and/or attack the 7th AD brigade in its salient. The Allies therefore bid 5. [The Allied player could bluff the German by bidding low and possibly giving the German the initiative, as all the German CPs would be used up and the Allied player could decide how many CPs to convert. The German player is quite weak so wouldn’t gain much from the first move.]Although the German HQs are unfatigued they have heavy step losses. Vietinghof orders them to stay on the defensive. If they bid high they might ‘accidentally’ end up with the initiative but on the other hand they may reduce the time passing on the OT. As the reaction player they can decide how many CPs to convert to RPs and can have some control over the OT. They bid 3 CPs.‘Secret’ bids revealed, the Allies have won the initiative. The German can dictate the length of the turn by converting more or less CPs to RPs. They convert 1 putting the OT on 4. CP, IP and RP tracks are moved accordingly. 5 IPs is sufficient for the Allied player to flip both Corps to their supported side. The 1 RP of the German is not enough to support 14th Corps.I should have waited until this point to reintegrate the 3 PzGD regiment that had been an asset. No damage done.Operations phase it is then. If 46th ID is to make contact again it has to be able to move two hexes AND enter strong German ZoC hexes so they’ll need an Advance Op to do so. Two divs can do this under one operation, so 7th AD is also named, and 23rd AB. Cost is one IP so the OT is moved to the 3 box. As there is no other cost it’ll be a CDO which means we can move and attack all units together or one Div at a time as normal. We’ll use the former option. Engineers attached to the 23rd AB repair the blown bridge and demolitions as they move forward, but we leave the bridgehead just in case. Any attacks in an Advance Op are at half strength but I’d like to keep the pressure on so decide to do a combined attack on a regiment of the 5th PzGD. Corps HQ also repositions forward. 7th AD generates 8 points for each of its brigades. (= 24) 46th adds a brigade worth 14 (=38) and 23rd AB adds 10. (=48). Tac Support from eligible adjacent units is added. (= 52) Both HQ arty AFs can be used. (= 58) The total is halved for an Advance Op so a strength of 29. However Support points to a total of 2 can be added. The Brits use 1 to give a final strength of 30.15th PzGD generates 14 points. Adjacent units add 3 (= 17) [in previous sessions I added Tac support from units that weren’t part of the same division – that was an error that favoured the defenders.] The maximum of 1 HQ AF is added. (= 18). Odd are 30:18 = 1.67. The lowland (terrain code 1) row will be used and the 1.50:1 column. The Brits have 16 ABs (!). No HQ ABs in attack. Subtract the terrain code for a total of 15. Halve this for the Advance Op limit to give +7 DRM. The German has 1 intrinsic AB plus the HQ adds 2-1 (for SL below 7) = 1, for a tot[...]

Session: John Prados' Third Reich:: Poland Conquered

Tue, 06 Dec 2016 10:47:39 +0000

by polate

Offensives Fall 1939. France sent some armour and Tac to Provence. The USSR and UK landed at Danzig and lower Saxony but the Brits were driven back into the North Sea. 5 Luftwaffe TAC flew to Naples. Gladiators cleared Swordfish through to the U-boat pens in Wilhelmshaven unfortunately all the torpedoes missed

Winter 1939. Germany spent a lot in production to claim 1st diplomacy and came within a hair's breadth of allying with Poland, it was the die that let him down. Poland allied with France instead, a poor choice as she was swiftly conquered. 1 offensive stripped the front, the 2nd smashed into Warsaw from east and west. Danzig was reinforced and weathered both attacks then abandoned fearing its supply line. Spain became an axis client, inviting 2 panzers to Andalucia threatening Gibraltar. The Rock was promptly reinforced with ships, tanks and planes. The dregs of the French Poilous lined the Pyrenees. Going 2nd in SR made it easy for the allies to react. France cleared part of the Piedmont coast. British infantry re-invaded the Saxon coast.

Spring 1940. Italy lost 6 TAC and 21 surf for 3CV, 4 surf and a sub in the med. That opened the way for a new landing in Calabria. Britain reinforced her Niedersacshen bridgehead. Germany, France and Russia still have chits sitting in the offensives cup for this turn. All quiet in the eastern med. Daggers drawn across the Rhine. Heavy bombers forward based to Corsica. There is some scope for a french advance.Like 2 wrestlers about to come to grips. Thanks to Jon (Axis) for a good session.

Session: A Feast for Odin:: My fourth solo Feast - 124 points

Tue, 06 Dec 2016 08:26:17 +0000

by ssmooth I approach each game with some goals in mind:1. In round 1, get at least a 2x2 cornerstone laid on my home board to start some regular income. This is fundamental and I can't think of a reason ever not to do it.2. Breed some animals. Milking and woolgathering can be useful, but the big thing is that if you procure a breeding pair by round 3, your investment doubles itself before round 7. Four cattle promoted to green and blue tiles can cover a lot of squares on your home board -- 48 to be precise. Somehow this doesn't reach the top of my priorities list in every game.3. Work some of the other boards, not just the home board. I've explored Iceland in three games and tried out the long and the short House tiles. Tonight I skipped Iceland but worked Bear Island and Labrador for the first time.4. Get boats/ships. Can't claim an island exploration board without one. I tried whaling boats in one game, but so far I like the ships better. If I have a blue one (the knarr) I'll probably use it once or twice to buy tiles for cash and once for "overseas trading" (converting a mass of green tiles to blue). If I have a red one (the longship) I'm eager to go pillaging and am not even above a bit of raiding if I've only got one Viking to spare. Ideally I'll have both but tonight I got by on just a longship.There are certain imperatives in the early going; it's essential to get some income and then some bonuses happening. But if you concentrate too much on this, you can spend your whole game worrying about filling in your home board and when you're done, you'll have your home board filled in but nothing else accomplished. So to raise your game, you have to hit some long-term investments as well, the animal breeding and ship deployment and island exploration. And, oh yeah, you have to keep being prepared for the Feast at the end of every round. I have yet to play a game where I found opportunity to make all the long-term investments happen.The interesting and somewhat frustrating thing is, it seems that no matter what lines I follow, I still wind up in the neighborhood of 120, plus or minus my luck with the dice. After my first solo game of 121 points, I've taken a 120 with an asterisk, a 116, and now finally whiff a hint of progress with this 124.My starter occupation card tonight was the Apprentice Crafter: one free good from the mountain strips any time I used an action in the Crafting section. It even gave me the good BEFORE the action, so there would be a couple of times when I could actually pick up the good and use it to pay the cost of the action.I wanted to get this into play early, so my first action was taking a coin and drawing a regular occupation card (cost 1 Viking). This was the Tradesman, an "any time" card to let me trade a 3x1 blue for either a 2x2 or a 4x1. My next move was to play both cards (cost 2V). Then I crafted my 3x1 yellow into a 4x1 green (cost 1V), picking up a piece of wood as my Apprentice Crafter bonus. With that wood and the extra arrow card I'd drawn prior to the first actions, I felt confident enough to go Hunting Game (1V), where I succeeded and proceeded to upgrade both those tiles (1V) to the blue 3x1 (susceptible to the Tradesman) and the green 3x2 which I'd use for my cornerstone tile.Thus ended my first round.In the second round, I got some goods, raised some money, and bought my first cow and a gallon of milk. In the third round I went to the 3-Viking column to pair my cattle; if breeding is in your plans, you want to have the pair by the third round.The sequence of events starts to elude me here, but in round 2 or 3 my first attempt at Laying a Snare ended in failure (I rolled 7 three times in a row!), but that gave me an extra Viking to deploy and I grabbed the Stone House early so as to get that bonus 3x1 tile which would be useful with the Tradesman.At some point[...]

Session: Capture: A Medieval Wargame:: First Game: A Rousing Success with the 8-13 Year-Old Crowd

Tue, 06 Dec 2016 08:26:00 +0000

by TIM0THY My copy of Capture arrived last Thursday. I read through the rulebook later that evening and Saturday afternoon I was able to pull it out and play through a game with my kids.It took no effort on my part to convince any of my kids to come play this game. Once the catapults were on the table everyone under the age of 14 in my household was enthralled.The rules in this game are simple so it only took a few minutes to get this game up and running.We played the team version of the game. I believe the rulebook states that the game can be played in teams of two. But I couldn't see any reason why we couldn't play in teams of three. (I had five kids crowded around the board, all wanting to join in the fun, so I couldn't see any reason to exclude anyone.)From the get-go everyone was gunning for 4's and 5's on their dice rolls to they could use the catapults. My two oldest sons (11 and almost 8) and their friend (12) were on the blue team. I was on the red team with my 13-year-old daughter and my 3-year-old son. (He was more of a cheerleader than a participant, and was kept content playing with an extra catapult [I ordered two extras as an add-on].) I allowed my daughter to take control of the strategy, and she went opted for a fairly aggressive approach, immediately sending two of our soldiers deep into enemy territory. We weren't rolling many 4's or 5's, so we didn't have many opportunities to attack with the catapults. We managed to take control of an enemy crown quickly, but were unable to maneuver our way back to friendly territory without getting captured. Meanwhile, our opponents on the blue team rolled several 4/5's and early in the game and began honing their skills on the catapults. They were quite enthusiastic about adjusting the pressure used and how to take aim. Their efforts at methodically dialing in their shots paid off. After a few early misfires, they hit their stride and were able to take out several of our red pawns later in the game. While I'm on the topic of the catapults, I'll mention that I found it interesting that in the variants section of the rulebook, the designers offer the option of playing the games without the catapults, suggesting that the game can be played more strategically this way. However, after watching my sons' ability to use the catapults improve as quickly as it did during our single play, I'm convinced that the catapults aren't just a gimmicky marketing device- skilled users will be able to use them to devastating effect in this game, most likely decimating any opponents who can't wield them as effectively. I'm withholding final judgement on this issue until I've played a few more games, but this is the direction I'm leaning at the moment.But back to Saturday's game. My daughter's foolhardy rush headlong into the enemy's homeland, combined with the enemy's overwhelming catapult bombardments ultimately lead to the red team's untimely demise. Before long we were heavily outnumbered, and the blue soldiers were able to infiltrate our territory relatively unopposed, confiscate our crowns and carry them to their realm.Since then I found myself consider what we should have done differently. The treasure cards offer some powerful bonuses. I think in future games it will be was to acquire several of these before heading for the crowns. Since they can only be acquired by sending a pawn into enemy territory I forsee forays into enemy territory solely for the purpose of acquiring treasure cards, with the treasure-seeking soldier returning quickly after acquiring the treasure. Once a sizeable supply of treasure cards has been acquired I believe that attempts out capturing enemy crowns will be much more effective when sending multiple soldiers after a single crown, forcing the opponent to guard two directions, rather than allowing them to confront a single invading pawn h[...]

Session: New Angeles:: Fascinating nuances in our second game (Federalist win)

Tue, 06 Dec 2016 05:30:12 +0000

by nlshelton I picked this up on Friday and got to play it twice on Saturday. I have been greatly looking forward to it. What follows is my thought process during the second half of one of these plays, and some insight after.---It is the end of the second demand phase. I am 5 capital behind my rival, and threat is at 10. We draw new investment cards... I receive one that pays based on the number of Orgcrime units on the board (not looking promising as there currently are none) and the other is the Short Sale that pays out based on the number of resources at 1 or less. Our demand isn't very friendly to this, as 3 resources have requirements to be at 2+. But if I plan to tank it, I could get a huge payout (and maybe prevent other investments from being profitable also). Again, threat is only at 10... I think we can take a hit of 6...One of the main sources of capital in this game are Investment cards, which you score every demand round. Every time you make a selection it's draw-two-keep-one, but they are NOT all equal. Depending on the board state, some are going to be wildly valuable and some are going to be trash. Where it gets most interesting though, is when they could be lucrative *if* the game state is manipulated a bit. Particularly since half of the cards pay out based on plentiful "bad" things being on the board (unrest, orgcrime, illnesses, etc.) This is a "soft" traitor mechanic on top of the "hard" Federalist mechanic, because it motivates you to resolve things in a sheisty way to further your own self-interest.Comparing this to Dead of Winter, I feel like the hidden goals there are sometimes tricky to meet, but rarely cause you to resolve actions in a way that truly run contrary to the goals of the group. They're more just things you largely have to kinda "luck" into. (Did I get equipment on all my guys? Did my second character die? etc.)---Round 5 was not good. As planned, late in the round I was able to cause a ruckus by offering to move all androids to districts where we needed to make resources... I opted to move no androids at all which means we didn't produce a thing this round (their current spots all had outage or strike) and nabbed a sweet asset to boot. But then we resolved the event and the game has completely changed. We got punished hard for outages on the board and the placement of some new Human First units cascaded to The Root. Now we're sitting at 20 with one game round to go. It's no longer possible for the demand to fail without threat going to 25. And it's going to be quite tough to even dig out of the hole in the first place, as we have to make sure to a) make the resources we need, b) keep illness from raising threat, and c) try to do what we can to mitigate threat from the final event.Boy-oh-boy can the game state change quickly. Even before I made my move to mess up the play in my own self-interest, one of the other players backed a deal by the presumed-Federalist in exchange for a six (6!!!) capital trade. Once the Federalist player gets above 25 capital, he is really dangerous because he has way more wiggle room to offer capital to help sway events ... he doesn't care about having more than any other player. He just needs what he needs. And those offers start being very tempting when you know that you can't meet your own goal unless you get your capital from SOMEbody... And the Federalist is always in contention, because the threat can climb super-quickly on its own even without his interference.In BSG, once the Cylon(s) reveal, they have no assistance to offer the humans. They're just the bad guys, and it's us-versus-them. Here you have this delicious pressure constantly to deal with the devil, because they can always offer you things that you might need to meet your own goal.---Somehow we've managed to hang on by the skin of our teeth... [...]

Session: Advanced Squad Leader:: Advanced Squad Leader - Puma Prowls (rozgrywka instruktażowa)

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 23:53:41 +0000

by Grisz Advanced Squad Leader - Puma Prowls (rozgrywka instruktażowa)Witam w trzeciej części mojego cyklu tekstów poświęconego grze w „Advanced Squad Leader”. Tym razem skupimy się na pojazdach pancernych. Ci, którzy przesiadają się ze Starter Kit na „pełnego” ASL, zapewne pamiętają, że właśnie czołgi były najbardziej złożoną częścią mechaniki SK. Dobra wiadomość jest taka, że większość zasad w obu wersjach nie uległa zmianom, tak więc posiadana wiedza będzie nam nadal dobrze służyć. Tu zaś omówię te rzeczy, które w pełnym ASL dodano i przypomnę część już znanych, które czasem budzą wątpliwości.Nauczyć się czołgów na pewno warto. Owszem, zdarzają się gracze, którzy odmawiają tego i grają tylko w scenariusze, w których występuje piechota, ale uważam, że to niezbyt sensowne podejście, bo wyklucza automatycznie olbrzymią ilość scenariuszy. Tak naprawdę zasady czołgów nie są bardziej złożone czy skomplikowane niż piechoty. Ich felerem jest być może kilka kwestii, które mogą się wydawać niejasne, ale po ich rozpracowaniu wszystko idzie już gładko. W trakcie tego scenariusza mam nadzieję większą część tych spraw objaśnić i jeśli wcześniej ktoś miał problemy z czołgami w ASL, to ufam, iż ów tekst rozwiążę je raz na zawsze.Wybrałem scenariusz „Puma Prowls” pochodzący z oryginalnego „Squad Leader”, przystosowany do zasad „Advanced Squad Leadera” i udostępniony za darmo, z pozostałymi dziewięcioma, na stronie MMP. Jest on wygodny, gdyż zawiera niewielką liczbę pojazdów i co za tym idzie jest idealny do nauki posługiwania się nimi. Co więcej, nie ma tu piechoty, więc możemy skupić się wyłącznie na pojazdach.Pokrótce przypomnijmy/opiszmy, co czołg/samochód pancerny/działo samobieżne itd. może robić w danych fazach:Rally Phase: można naprawiać uszkodzone MA/MG i podejmować próbę wyjścia ze stanu Shock/UK.Prep Fire Phase: może strzelać, jeśli nie jest w trybie Motion. Obrót wieży jest DRM dla strzału.Movement Phase: atakujący może poruszać swoje pojazdy (pojazdy pancerne bez radia tylko w trybie ruchu plutonowego), podejmować próby przejścia w stan Hull Down, wykonywać Overrun, może strzelać w ramach Bouning Fire. Strzał z innych broni niż MA w Bounding Fire redukuje ich siłę ognia o połowę. Obrót wieży jest możliwy o jeden kąt za każdy wydany MP i nie jest DRM. Drugi strzał z MA po stracie ROF możliwy jest w ramach Intensive Fire. Możliwa jest zmiana stanu CE w BU i na odwrót, ale tylko raz na fazę i przed oddaniem pierwszego strzału z MA. Pojazdy mogą używać sD itp. ale tylko przed oddaniem pierwszego strzału z jakiejkolwiek broni. Załoga może dobrowolnie opuścić swój pojazd i podjąć próbę wymontowania z niego broni. Obrońca może strzelać w ramach Defesive Fire. Obrót wieży stanowi DRM dla strzału. Obrońca może podejmować próbę przejścia w tryb Motion, jeśli przeciwnik wykonywał ruch w jego LOS. Obrońca w trybie Motion może obracać wieżę oraz zmieniać ukierunkowanie pojazdu.Defensive Fire Phase: pojazd obrońcy, który nie strzelał w MPh (lub strzelał i zachował ROF), może zrobić to teraz.Advancing Fire Phase: pojazd atakującego, który nie strzelał w MPh (lub strzelał i zachował ROF), może strzelać w tej fazie w ramach Bounding Fire. Pojazd atakującego, który nie strzelał ani z MA ani z MG, może użyć teraz swoich MG, dzieląc ich siłę ognia na pół (lub na cztery, jeśli jest w trybie Motion).Rout Phase: pojazd, który jest w BU, Motion, nieposiadający MG (lub MA z IFE) mającego LOS z uciekającą jednostką, nie stwarza Interdiction.Advance Phase: pojazdy atakującego mogą zmienić stan z CE w BU i na odwrót.Close Combat P[...]

Session: Silent Victory: U.S. Submarines in the Pacific, 1941-45:: The career of Lt Com S.D.Cutter - USS Seahorse

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 23:09:21 +0000

by wazdaka Hello againFor my second outing I intend to mirror Lt Commander Slade D CutterUSS Seahorse with a Veteran crewPatrol 1Marianas October 1943 - Front all Mk14s and rear all new electric Mk18sAircraft interception, Kawanishi H6K, but we successfully crash dive due to its huge size we saw it well before it got to us.Convoy encounteredDamaged two ships with 6 steam torps. Elected to follow and managed to sink the straggling tanker with my guns. Came across the passenger ship Brasil which I sunk with 2 Mk18s and damaged the escort ship.5200T T Palebang (Sunk with guns)6800 F Yuri (escaped)2800 P Kashimasan (Damaged)Second encounter was the passenger ship Brasil. Due to the daytime encounter I fired my rear four electrics at close range. Only damaged the escort and it dropped a couple of depth charges which damaged my hull.12800 P Brasil (sunk)1200 DD Escort (Damaged)Mission result2 ships sunk - 18000 Tonnes - due to Hull damage extra month in refitMission 2Marshalls February 1944 - same torpedo layout. Steam forward electric aft. That way the crews can become experts in their particular weapon.First encounter was the Freighter Kydo with a destroyer time so fired three steams at each at medium range. two hits on each sinking them outright. My first mate chastises me for wasting 6 torpedo's on two low tonnage ships. Dammit he is right. Have advised him to talk to me openly in front of the crew in future. I don't want him thinking he cant challenge me in front of the crew. I need them to know I value them all.1500 P Kydo (Sunk)1200 DD Escort (Sunk)Second encounter was two ships with escortdue to the daylight I closed in submerged and fired 1 electric at the Shoho, 2 at the Shonan and one at a slow moving destroyer nearby. I hit the Shonan and destroyer. Sounds of breaking up heard from both. Managed to slink away.1900 F Shoho (Escaped)5300 F Shonan (Sunk)12oo DD Escort (Sunk)Met an unescorted frieghter and sunk it with my new 5" gun.2300 F Tairiku (Sunk)Mission result5 Ships sunk - 11500 tonnes - No damageMission 3Philippines May 1944 - Same loadout of torps againAircraft encountered again. DIVE DIVE DIVE! Don't think it saw us.ConvoyClose in and sight 3 small freighters and a destroyer.Fire a single electric torp at each target. Sink one but miss the other two freighters. The torp aimed at the escort hits but fails to explode!The escorts closes and takes a run at us. 3 Hits The Pharmacists mate is killed be the blast. Fuel tanks are ruptured and the aft doors damaged.the second run results in the deck gun damaged, Radio damaged and the batteries damaged.I fail to escaped another pounding. This time the dive planes Diesel two and Fwd even torp doors are hit.I cant escape with so much damage. The escorts have no trouble finding us and due to the batteries and fuel tank damage drop a depth charge right on target killing all on board.SUNK WITH ALL HANDS.Ouch when you start taking damage it can be hard to shift those escorts. Utterly fail to come close to Lt Commander Cutters career.I would like to thank Greg Smith for this game. I have thoroughly enjoyed it and will continue to do battle in the deep.I am ex navy. The closest I got to subs was at Faslane where I worked as a Chef for a year. Rest of my service was on HMS Fearless, a troop ship. I have nothing but respect for the men that went to sea in the pacific to fight. This game has inspired me to read The Bravest man, about Richard O'Kane. He was first mate to Mush Morton before being given the Tang. Truly incredible men. Highly recommend it. [...]

Session: Kingdom Death: Monster:: Finally faced a Phoenix...

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 22:13:46 +0000

by bibious So we finally fought our first Phoenix last night – only a level 1.To the pros out there we waited too long to fight it, LY14, but it’s only our second play through and we are pretty conservative.Hunt Phase was brutal, all of our Hunt table rolls were in the 70s, just a funny coincidence on the way the dice were falling; the events weren’t all that bad, just our event rolls on the specific events were bad haha. Started out normally, some minor damage and brain damage to some survivors on hunt events. Then got this one even where if we rolled a Lantern we would have gotten a free innovation next settlement phase (assuming the survivor made it back) of course I rolled like a 3 or 4 so instead of a free innovation I got some more damage – LOL. Another event had the revealer rolling on a table where a 1 gets you a dismembered arm, mid-range gets you some damage higher up you get some ‘good’ stuff (as good as KDM can be to you ha-ha) or you can opt to not investigate and roll again on event table for a new event. It was my wife’s survivor so I said it’s up to you (she’s very risk averse and doesn’t like even a small chance of something bad happening to her character.) Then without discussing she tosses the dice and the result is a 1! Dismembered Arm, her character who was our Zanbato specialist is now just ‘special’ and cannot use two handed weapons. We were pretty discouraged at this point. Next event is the Phoenix event that could either make it ambush us or fly back three spaces, it flew backwards which means we are crossing Overwhelming darkness for our level 1 hunt. Joy! Cross darkness, one survivor got an evasion token, someone else took three event damage across three different locations, one survivor lost all insanity and the final survivor freaked out in the darkness and punched everyone else for 1 more damage, what a jerk! We forgot about herb gathering which would have helped, but oh well. As we trek along we get another random hunt event that was nothing of note. We then roll the Relic one that we had before, this one where we have a chance at a free innovation. I roll and boom Lantern 10! Free innovation next settlement phase IF we survive and make it back. It gives us the hope and resolve t we needed to do our best and beat this beast and at least this one survivor make it back for the betterment of the settlement! A couple more events that weren’t too interesting and we finally get ready to face the Phoenix!We are kitted out pretty decently for this fight (or at least we think we are.)Have a Red Savior in a full set of screaming fur armor (wasn’t insane when he departed boo!) He has blood paint with a scrap sword and scrap hammer and two Red Affinities. And shield.Have another survivor with Cat’s eye Circlet full rawhide set, a Cat Gut bow and Banadages (left the arrow at home for Bandages because we’ve been failing hard with the arrow.) and a founding stone.Our Zanbato wielder with Devastor on, in full leather, founding stone, and greased up for evasion bonus with shield and bone sickle. Of course this survivor now has a dismembered arm so can’t fight with the Zanbato. This one also has Red Fist fighting art and doled out +1 Str tokens to everyoneFinal survivor is our monster claw fighter but is carrying the counterweighted Axe in full leather, monster grease, founding stone and some other stuff I can’t remember.Our Cat’s eye circlet wearer has priority target token due to Anxiety.First turn Phoenix draws a mood that makes it harder to move and swing your weapons for each Age Token you have. Then it does its Basic Action, we have it move to the Cat’s eye survivor who dashes and gets out of the way. Basic Action hi[...]

Session: Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition):: Shadow Rune Finale: The Man who would be king

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 20:10:19 +0000

by Donk84

After 9 quests spanning 16 session over almost 2 years we finished our first Descent Campaign, The Shadow Rune. This is the story of the Finale, encounter two.
The 4 intrepid heroes arrived at the final showdown battered and bruised, having only just chased down the goblin king Splig in the first encounter of the Finale to seize the iron crown that would allow one of them to resist Baron Zachareth. Their mission was simple, kill the Baron and all would be well. All that stood in their way was a hoard of zombies, two shadow dragons and two of the Overlord's lieutenants, Lady Eliza and Lord Merrick Farrow. Avric (Peter) dutifully performed his role as healer and got everyone back into better shape. Syndrael (Jonathon) advanced forward and with a mighty whirlwind strike killed most of the zombie hoard that was blocking the path to the Baron. Leoric (Elizabeth) and Jain decided to finish off the remaining zombies and then huddle around Avric who had used Prayer of Peace to ward off adjacent attacks. However, Leoric could not resist the dark charm of the Baron, and dutifully moved forward away from the protection of Avric where she was felled with a flaming arrow from Lord Merrick. One hero down, three to go. The shadow dragons advanced forward menacingly and the master zombie reappeared at the entrance. Syndrael advanced forward once more, crippling and wounding the lead shadow dragon. Avric advanced forward too, and after freeing himself from a web trap, he gallantly moved in beside Syndrael to try to hold some kind of defensive line that would prevent Lord and Lady Farrow's attacks. The immobilised dragon struck down Avric, and as the remaining two heroes watched their healer die they knew their time was soon to come. The other shadow dragon dashed through the gap where Avric had fallen to try to strike down Jain, but Jain was too nimble and moved to now plug the gap left by Avric. The master zombie approached from behind and badly wounded her before the Baron charmed her, causing her to turn her weapon on herself, her body falling on top of Avric's. Sensing that the end was close the immobilised shadow dragon flew into a blood rage and dealt two mighty blows to Syndrael. The heroes were dead. The Overlord had won.
This last encounter was not close and was a little anti-climatic but the journey was really cool, creating lots of good stories.

Session: Quartermaster General:: A game with 6 newbies

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 14:33:38 +0000

by pgkashmir

I invited 6 friends over for a few(turned out to be 3 games in a 3 hour period) games of Quartermaster General with the Air Master expansion. I had given a few of them the rules to read and the others we explained the rules with some demonstration. None of these people had played the game before and I provided no strategy or description of how to play each country. I let them look at the card breakdown on the back of the Airmaster rulebook and let them thumb through their chosen decks before play.

Without giving a true session report I will explain how each game progressed. In game one there was some very unorthodoxed play. Germany never went east and there remained a buffer between the Soviets and Germany/Italy until about turn 7. United Kingdom spent all of its time collecting points in Australia, India, and eventually Canada. Japan went west towards the US eventually hitting Canada before being repelled. Russia mobilized into Asia but never managed to take any supply centers there. Italy conquered Africa and the Middle East. The US built a lovely stronghold in South America eventually battling Italy for Africa. Eventually Germany got blitzkrieg down and steamrolled Russia before taking the United Kingdom's home territory and the game ended on turn 14 with an axis victory.

I provided no critique or strategy tips to any of the players. We changed countries and tried the game again. By game two the players figured out that Europe was the key and UK and US hammered Europe while leaving Japan alone. The game ended in classic fashion on turn 12 with an allied victory.

The third game ended with another allied victory with Japan being the victim of very aggressive UK and US. Germany and Italy went after Russia and almost had them knocked out before Japan fell and the game ended with an imminent allied victory.

It was interesting to see how quickly these new players caught on to the mainstream strategy of the game. I was surprised to see that the learning curve for this game is not too steep. That second game looked like any game played by experienced players. They all agreed that the game appears easier for the allies and the axis have to work together to win.

The game was a hit overall and everyone involved is ready to play again.

Session: Tiny Epic Galaxies:: Solo turn by turn

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 13:21:21 +0000

by KingJackalope This is a play by play of my solo game with Zendica. Ore than anything wanted to get input if I am playing everything correctly. Especially like 85-96 entries. Pretty sure I'm good to go but it's nice to verify.Sorry if it's too dry of a read... Player vs Zendica (medium Rogue Galaxy)1. Deal initial 4 planets of: Birkomius, Aughmoore, Nibiru, and Leandra2. Roll 4 dice: Energy, Culture, Diplomacy, and Economy.3. Use Energy advance to 4 on track.4. Use free re-roll remaining 3 dice.5. Roll: 3 Economy. 6. Use 1 energy to re-roll dice.7. Roll: Move A Ship (will refer as 'Launch' going forward), 2 Economy8. Launch ship to: Nibiru9. Spend 1 energy to re-roll 2 dice.10. Roll: Economy and Culture11. Use Culture to gain 1 Culture from Nibiru. Culture at 2.12. End player turn 1.13. Zendica's 1st roll: Launch to: Birkomius.14. 2nd roll: Energy. Gains 3 energy.15. 3rd roll: Launch to: Aughmoore.16. 4th roll: Economy17. 5th roll: Launch to: Nibiru.18. Player rolls 4 dice: 2 Colony, Economy, Culture19. Use a Colony to upgrade to level 2. Use 2 Culture. Score: 1.20. Use free re-roll. 21. Roll: 2 Dipolomacy and Launch. 22. Advance ship on Nibiru using both Diplomacy. At 2 on track.23. Launch ship to: Leandra24. End player turn 2.25. Zendica's 1st roll: Energy. Gains 2 energy, maxes out.26. 2nd roll: Diplomacy. Advances on: Birkomius, Aughmoore, and Nibiru.27. 3rd roll: Diplomacy. Advance and Colonize Birkomius. Advance Augmoore and Nibiru. Score: 1.28. Zendica's ship returns to galaxy mat and Omicron-Fenzi is discovered.29. 4th roll: Energy.30. 5th roll: Economy.31. Zendica upgrades to level 2. Energy reset to 0. Score: 332. Score: Player 1, Zendica 3.33. Player rolls 5 dice: 2 Energy, 2 Colony, Culture.34. Use Energy to gain 1 energy from Leandra.35. Use 1 Colony and 3 Energy from track to Upgrade to level 3. Gain 1 ship to galaxy. Score: 2.36. Diplomacy to advance on Nibiru to 3.37. Use free re-roll.38. Roll: Diplomacy and Launch.39. Diplomacy to advance on Nibiru to 4.40. End turn.41. Zendica's 1st roll: Launch ship to Omicron-Fenzi.42. 2nd roll: Energy. Gains 2 energy from galaxy and Aughmoore.43. 3rd roll: Colony. Acquires 2 Culture.44. 4th roll: Launch ship to Leandra.45. 5th roll: Launch.46. Score: player 2, Zendica 3.47. Player rolls 5 dice: 2 Colony, Energy, Economy, and Diplomacy.48. Diplomacy. Advance to 5 on Nibiru. 49. Energy. Gain 2 energy. Advance to 2 on track.50. Free re-roll: Diplomacy, Economy, and Colonize.51. Diplomacy. Colonize Nibiru. Return ships to respective galaxies and La-Torres is discovered. Player score: 952. End turn.53. Zendica's 1st roll: Economy.54. 2nd roll: Colony. Acquires 2 Culture.55. 3rd roll: Culture. Acquires 2 and maxes out.56. 4th roll: Diplomacy. Advances on: Omicron-Fenzi, Aughmoore, and Leandra.57. 5th roll: Launches to La-Torres.58. Clear control mat.59. 1st bonus turn: Culture.60. 2nd bonus turn: Colony. 61. 3rd bonus turn: Culture.62. Reset Culture to 0.63. Score: Player 9, Zendica 3.64. Player rolls 5 dice: 2 Launch, 2 Culture, Diplomacy.65. Diplomacy. Advance 1 on Leandra.66. Free re-roll: 2 Economy, Culture, and Launch.67. Spend 1 energy to re-roll: 2 Economy, Diplomacy, Launch.68. Diplomacy. Colonize Leandra. Return ships to respective galaxies. Jorg is discovered. Score: 10.69. Launch to Jorg.70. Use last energy to re-roll: Launch and Diplomacy.71. Diplomacy to Jorg. 72. Launch to Aughmoore.73. Zendica's 1st roll: Culture. Acquire 3 Culture from galaxy, Omicron-Fenzi, and La-Torres.74. 2nd roll: Diplomacy. Advance on: Omnicron-Fenzi, Augmoore, and La-Torres.75. 3rd roll: Energy. Acquire 2 Energy from: galaxy and Aughmoore.76. 4th roll: Launch ship to Jorg.77.[...]

Session: The Scepter of Zavandor:: [Session] How much would you pay for a third Mask of Charisma?

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 13:21:15 +0000

by Osirus

There are many reasons this remains my favorite game, but one of them is that it really does feel different every time.

A 5-player game tonight. I got stuck as the Witch again (not my favorite, as it makes the last-turn opal-sentinel switch much less lucrative), and everything except the kobold was in the game. I was trying not to be forced into the Crystal Ball, so I bought only the Spellbook from A and the Belt from B. Druid did the ramp-up to a first ruby as expected, Mage grabbed a very early Elixir, Elf doubled Spellbook with a later Elixir, and Faerie who had grabbed the last Spellbook early ended up buying all three Crystals of Protection.

As the game progressed, Druid continued to buy rubies, pausing to buy a Magic Mirror as protection. Elf and Mage each grabbed a Chalice of Fire, with the Mage also grabbing a Wand, Faerie amassed a wide array of artifacts (at least 7, including belt and wand), and I acquired the first Mask quite cheaply (no more than 60) and the second one somewhere around 70.

However, buying the Masks as soon as they came out had put me in a pretty bad place for income. I had 4 emeralds and 3 sapphires, at one point getting up to 4 and 4 after hitting the accumulation track, but mirrors kept undoing my final sapphire. The result was that my income flip-flopped between 54 and an average of 47 -- not too good when my opponents were mostly getting 75 (and the Faerie had triple-concentrated-Emerald income for 96!), especially as my un-augmented 6-card hand limit (save for playing on the last 2 knowledge tracks) meant that I could only hold two concentrated incomes, and not a single dust more. (I had to throw away a lot of dust over the course of the game.) On the other hand, more masks!

Finally, the third mask flipped. Bidding was contentious, and since I was left without a single card in hand, everyone knew what I had to work with. Bidding went up to somewhere in the 80s -- I have certainly seen the Mask go for a lot more, but the artifacts progressed fairly speedily this game, such that nobody had really gotten the big income engine rolling for many turns. Everyone else dropped out, and I managed to win the third Mask, but at the cost of selling half of my gem board, decimating my income, and setting me back some turns.

I built up to concentrated Sapphires again just in time to be hamstrung by the Shadow Cloak. Should have just bought an opal. And while my lousy turn was "buy 3 sapphires using all my income", my opponents were raking 75 to do what they liked, including buying the first sentinel.

But this took me out of first, and in second place (since I was at the end of the Knowledge of Artifacts track), with all three masks, sentinels only cost me 50! Admittedly, thanks to yet another Cloak, I wasn't even raking 50 per turn, and had to throw away everything BUT 50 thanks to my low hand limit.

Still, on the final turn I managed to sell all my remaining emeralds to augment my income and the 50 I saved to buy two sentinels, one of which was the Opal sentinel, and then I could buy 4 opals and swap 2 of my sapphires into opals, giving me full points there, plus the Owl, barely squeaking me ahead of the Faerie who had bought a Talisman to join his Emerald Sentinel.

A very satisfying game.

Session: The Red Dragon Inn: Battle for Greyport:: 2 out of 7 wins and no respect for people complaining about this game

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 11:39:16 +0000

by Weaselboy

So I had my 7th game today, 4th time for the introductory scenario and it was a win. The other 3 times I have played the introductory scenario, each time with new people and 3-5 players, we have always managed to do at least
50% damage to Drog. Playing Hail to the King we lost but had killed Drog. We beat the Summoner on the first try and only had 2 monsters left taking on the werewolves.

Slugfest have stated right from the start of the kickstarter that this was going to be a very difficult game. They have posted in other threads that the introductory scenario was designed to be harsh. At no time was this game ever going to be as light and easy as RDI. Stop treating it as RDI. I've read the other threads and the issue isn't the game, it's in your play style and frame of mind going in. You should be treating it more like Ghost Stories, Dead of Winter or even the Big Book of Madness because it is that style of game. That is what many people seem to be failing to take into account.

From having 2 wins from 7 games spread among 4 different gaming groups I can say with extreme confidence that the game is balanced fine. Slugfest have done an incredible job once again and deserve recognition for doing so.

Session: Last Blitzkrieg:: A New Campaign

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 08:52:58 +0000

by doclb

Henrik and I have started a second Campaign game of Last Blitzkrieg. This session is a straight Campaign Scenario with no optional rules in play. We are using the BCS Rules ver 1.1. We have switched sides and I play the Allies while Henrik plays the Germans.

Here is the situation at the start of 16 Dec.

On 16 Dec only 8 Allied formations have a possibility of activating. 2 formations have a first activation with a possible second act. The remaining 6 formations need to pass a reactivation die roll to be able to activate once. Only four Allied formations activate and three of those activations fail the SNAFU DR. In other words only one Allied activation responds to the German attack on 16 December.

On the German side one Pz formation does not activate on 16Dec (LehrPz) and the remaining five Pz formations must pass a reactivation DR to activate on this first day. Two German Pz formations fail to conduct an activation on 16Dec.

The following image shows the situation at the end of play; 16Dec.

Session: War of the Ring (second edition):: A(nother) History of the West, in Newspaper Quotes.

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 04:44:26 +0000

by luckydogwilson Middle Earth Geographic : Mount Doom no longer Dormant!Imladris Inquirer: Research Team Dispatched to Mordor. Hand picked specialists to investigate... Rivendell Reporter: Why you should leave for Elvenesse. Voice of the Wizard: The Horse-lords are Your Enemy.The EYE: WAR! (full mobilization ordered)Tirith Times:Gondor Needs her King Now!Shirespeak:Peregrin Took finds cabbage shaped like a....Mark- the Word : Gondorian King Claimant visits Garrison - Historic meeting between Prince Theodred and Aragorn Telcontar (sketches on page 5).Voice of the Wizard:Two Tarks with One Stone! Our Courageous Wolf riders today surprised the enemy forces guarding the fords......Tirith Times:Taken Too Soon - All Gondor Grieves.Daily Palantir:BETRAYED! Action Demanded against "White" Wiz. (Feature spread:  your own White hand picture  to burn in the streets!)Middle Earth Geographic: Team Delayed by diversion. Volcanic activity blocks Moria? (L. Greenleaf recalled to Woodlands over "procedural" differences)The EYE: 33rd Regiment breaks previous speed record on Northward march.Imladris Inquirer:Elrond Admits – Valar asked to InterveneRivendell Reporter:No need to pack just yet.Mark -the Word: Deep Trouble - Enemy forces investing the Hornburg, overwhelmed the...The EYE: Cut Down to Size: Following an inspiring speech by the Witchking, our Northern army destroyed the Elven Woodland Realm.Mark - the Word (Final Edition) :-Golden Hall in Flames!ORKTALK: Elf Steak six new healthy ways to cook'em!Shirespeak:Bomba-trill! Old Tom croons his way back to the number one spot. (Tour dates, pages 3,4).Day of Dale (incorporating "Lake View"): King Brand Speaks:" ... I have to tell you I have received no such undertaking from the representatives of Morgul, and so I must announce that from 11 o'clock this country has been at a state of war." Middle Earth Geographic: Conference to be held in Lorien.Dwarven Nation: Appeal to help Refugees from Dale and Lake. - "Not our war" says Dain.Daily Palantir: “They” Are Coming! How to tell your Easterlings from your Southerons, and why it matters...Man About Harad: Corsair of the Year - the top nominees plus woodcuts of Miss Khand visiting front line troops.Middle Earth Geographic: Extinct Species Rediscovered! Mordor team makes exciting find en-route. A living fossil, foul-deepthingus, encountered by the banks of....the team have suggested "Gimli's Squid" as a suitable memorial...Tirith Times: Pelargir Falls, Coastal Provinces Assaulted.The EYE: Gothmog Honoured -Named to Lead New Army. Calls for "Maximum effort".Middle Earth Geographic:G Smeagol to Join "Doom" Expedition.Daily Palantir: "Dol-A" Saved in Epic Shoot-out They were good, but we were better says Prince. Gives hope for the Capitol.Tirith Times: Besieged! Middle Earth Geographic: "Doom" Report Out! G Greyhame - leader of the Mordor expedition announced that -Amon Amarth- and the risk which it posed- has been circumvented. Full Text page 3,5,6.Daily Palantir:Orod-ruined!ORKTALK (with editorial from The EYE) BLIND-SIDED! Investigation into safety protocol at Dark tower, were building regs. followed?Voice of the Wizard:Just a Misunderstanding - hand of friendship offered.Shirespeak: "BACK-INS!" - Shock return of Frodo Baggins to Bag End [...]

Session: The Italian Campaign: Salerno:: Approach to the Winterline Session 3

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 03:51:18 +0000

by ropey Operations are complete so it’s on to the Strategic Phase.Breakthrough movement occurs first, and there is one breakthrough hex on the table. 7th AD moves a unit up for free, after first checking it will still be within the Command Radius of the HQ. The marker is removed.Supply is checked, German first. All HQs are on or adjacent to roads, and all units are adjacent so the Germans have no problems. The supply situation of the US 45th ID is questionable as they are in terrain codes greater than 3. The HQ is in supply because it is adjacent to a road that leads to the USS. However, the rule as written for two units is they must be adjacent to a road hex that leads to the HQ. Here they are adjacent to the HQ but not on a road hex. As I am the rules god in this playtest I am allowing supply, reasoning that this is exactly the terrain these units fought in historically, and though supply was difficult it did get through. Hooray for mules. However, the third unit that has crossed the mountains cannot trace to its HQ, so is OoS (even though realistically it is in the easiest supply situation as it would trace through another HQ). An OCC marker is placed on it. [?? Why? This rule needs to be changed, as OCC is more restrictive than ISO. I am placing an ISO instead. Had it already been ISO I would have placed an OCC as well.] The rest of the US units are in easier terrain so have no issues. Likewise the Brits.It’s now time for Strategic Ops. There are no Strategic Map concerns so we can only choose Refit, Reinforcement or Fortification Ops. The Allies have no reinforcement until the 23rd October, so can really only do a Refit, which they desperately need. How many points are available? 2D6 is rolled for an eight. Divide by 3 and round up to get 3 points. Could be worse, but they have 8 HQ SLs and 1 asset SL to lose, so they have to think carefully. They decide to remove two SL from 56th ID and 1 from 3rd ID. The CP is expended – the Allies have 1 left. The German does have a reinforcement available and reserved some CPs to bring it on. However, he wants to see how many replacements he receives to see how weak his line will be first. He chooses a Refit Op. 1D6 rolls a 3, divided by 2 rounded down gives just 1 SL, which is taken off 26th PzGD. The US player can only do a Fortification OP now which he does even though it is not really worthwhile. There’s no point in banking the CP as it will effectively be lost as he is receiving maximum CPs each turn anyway. The German player spends a CP on a Reinforcement Op and brings on the rest of 3rd PzGD. With only half MPs available they can still move to reinforce the depleted HG. Unfortunately, they arrive with SL and must absorb the SL of the earlier regiment so are already on 2! The US player has no CPs left so passes. The German has one CP left so chooses a Fortification Op. These are placed on two controlled non-adjacent hexes. The German has no CPs left so the Strategic Ops are over.Support Track Replenishment occurs. Germans add 3 an the Allies 5 which I split the other way this time. Only a few units on the map qualify for the HQ and Asset Bonus movement and Refit, and only one asset: The US Amy engineer unit. I move it up toward the front. VI Corps also moves up. German XIV Corps moves back to Cervara. [Although I realise only after the photo was taken that Cervara was off-map, so moved it to the column 17xx.]In the adjustment segment there are no disrupted units adjacent to the enemy so all disrupted units flip to their full[...]

Session: SeaFall:: [SPOILERS] The Province of Mainframe, Game 4

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 02:20:12 +0000

by lactamaeon IN WHICH... ...Trade Flourishes ...a crew needs courage ...force of arms are brought against the darkness ...and a perilous climb is attemptedWelcome back to another session report! This game went much better than the previous, thanks in large part to a suggestion that we have the player to the right of the active player read Captain's Booke entries (while the active player makes choices and collects rewards without having to fumble around with the Booke). Also, we played at my house, so I had the whole thing set up before anyone arrived, saving even more time at the table. We got done in 2.5 hours instead of around 3.5 for the previous game, and everyone had more fun.As before, I won't be marking SPOILERS so be warned!The game begins with the Pirate King once again demanding gold. This was no worry for Princess Dot, as the Province of Arrakis was holding a much larger stockpile of gold. She immediately hired Welman (The Renowned Builder) to upgrade the Saucy Mare (Enduring) and ordered her ships forth, spending most of the treasury.The Restless Bones of a sunken ship rose from beneath the waves! Thankfully, the province of Leicester would take the brunt of their assault (as they returned home this turn to sell 4 goods and claim a milestone). Dot hired on Nick Fury (The Soldier's Patron) to raid the dock at Stygios to secure the Fearless upgrade for the SS Doyle.At this point, Turbulent Waters threatened to make dangerous waters even deadlier. This did not stop the province of R'lyeh from recovering a Shroud of the Ancients from the Tomb on Satellite Island. We brought in Salvador (The Renowned Explorer) and sailed on to Bermuda to explore one of its easier sites. There, Salvador had his first taste of Spice. While enjoying its effects, he was approached by a man named Hardboot (The Grizzled Veteran), who agreed to sail with us.Finally, the Seas were Smooth and we sailed back to Satellite, with Hardboot leading an expedition into the Tomb. While he made a valiant effort to go forward (recovering 15 gold from the site!), both Mouse (The Master Thief) and Salvador did not return.As Whispers Began to circle among the advisors at home, Dot once more hired the Crimson Binome (The Renowned Soldier) to lead a second foray into the Tomb, this time emerging with a map and and Ancient Tablet. The Tomb itself was now fully explored; we will need to find another in the future.At this point, the Pirate King demanded a tribute of goods, but none of the provinces had any! Dot ordered her ships to sail as far into the ocean as they could reach, taking advantage of a current they discovered along the way, to explore for a new island - Lost Angles! Due to a curse on the Saucy Mare, her upgrade would be dismissed, leaving us 1 glory short of victory.After the harvest and a brief winter, an open Market came to the province. Dot hired Megabyte (The Convict) simply to ensure she could carry an advisor to future games, and asked Welman to build a Museum for her tablet. The resulting glory sealed another victory for Mainframe, and we chose to improve our fields.And then, another box is unlocked! Colonies! More milestones, advisors, buildings, and upgrades!As I mentioned above, this game went more smoothly for everyone, and we are all looking forward to the next session. I'm particularly happy that it looks like we might actually stabilize the rules for a game or two, and not unlock another chest for a bit. (We have already found the Strange Chart, but I'm doubt[...]

Session: Legends of Andor: The Star Shield:: Our Star Shield Session on 3/12/2016

Mon, 05 Dec 2016 02:18:49 +0000

by Caylusboy Legend particulars:It was a three-player game, with Brigha, Liphardus (yours truly), and ChadaThe Prince’s Task was: repair the damaged gate of Rietburg CastleThe Main Threat was: the CatapultGifts of the Andori: we had chosen the Horned Falcon (aka "Cornelius"), the Torch of Cavern, and the Hadrian HourglassWe were using the E cardWe were playing with the "Rietburg Battlements" mini-expansionGame Highlights: Narrator on Space E:The E card had just been triggered (we rolled a 2), causing 4 extra Creatures to spawn, including a Gor on Space 42.Liphardus, who was escorting two Farmers, had just ended his day on space 39. At the next Sunrise, the Gor which had just spawned would take out the 2 essential Farmers!!!Brigha and Chada were a long distance away in the Castle. Chada heroically ran all the way to space 42, using her Herb (value 4) and thanks to the Hadrian Hourglass, which Brigha flipped for her. With the Torch, Chada pushed back the Gor to Space 44, before ending her day. At Sunrise, the Gor moved back into 42, a safe distance away from the Farmers: Chada had saved the day! Hurray!The next day (Narrator on Space F):On this turn, the Wolves deployed. Good fortune shone on the heroes: at Sunrise, a clear path through the monsters in the vicinity of the Castle had opened up for Liphardus; it wound from the Marketbridge through the farm and the Free Market along the road leading to the Rietburg. The Mage was able to escort his 2 Farmers to the Castle unhindered! Phew!The plan was that Chada would have the task of taming the Wolves. The Event card that had been drawn that day (The Royal Forges) worked out very nicely: it gave Chada the extra Strength Point she needed before taming the Wolves. She traveled the short distance to the Witch (just across the bridge, in space 47) to pick up a potion, which Reka generously gifted to the Hero and which Chada would need to tame the Alpha. Before moving back across the river to intercept the Alpha, Chada moved to the adjacent Space (56) to uncover a Runestone: no luck, it wasn’t the green Stone Liphardus needed to complete his set.Next, Chada moved the short distance back across the river to intercept the Alpha Wolf (in 64). At Strength 3, she succeeded in taming the great Wolf, with the aid of a swig of brew! Chada then had to spend more precious time travelling to Space 66 to fetch the green Runetone, and a Herb, before sending it to the Mage via Cornelius… Narrator on Space L :We had nearly completed our Prince’s Task: Brigha, who had impressively levelled up to Strength 7, had hauled a value 6 log to the Castle. All we needed to do was deliver 1 more log (value 4), and we could then deal with the main Threat, namely to take out the 2 super Trolls manning the Catapult. We had earlier succeeded in recovering the Star Shield, but had used (perhaps too soon) both its red crosses to slow the advance of Creatures on the Castle. Time was running out fast. The only possible path to victory, we thought, was to multitask: Chada would focus on completing the Prince’s task, while Brigha and Liphardus, assisted by the 3 Wolves, would attempt to take out the Trolls operating the Catapult.Chada in the Watchful Forest had levelled up to the 5 Strength she needed to carry the last value 4 log back to the Rietburg. She was able to do so without it costing too much time or gold, by making good use of a +1 Strength fog token and Melkart’s Event card (+1 Strength), sitting at [...]

Session: Peter the Great:: A Solitaire Play

Sun, 04 Dec 2016 23:35:39 +0000

by drmark64 Playing the Historical Scenario right hand against the left. I tend to play conservatively to preserve my order of battle. Since I am both sides, well... You get the idea.Russians set up their power units at the very front. I would not do this in a subsequent play.Turn 1: Swedes aggressively attack the first two redoubts but they hold firm.Turn 2: Swedes overrun the first redoubt, weaken the second, and force the left flank.Turn 3: The second redoubts falls to the Swedes but a Russian counterattack collapses the Swedes left flank.Turn 4: The Swedes pause to restore their left flank. Casualties are mounting for the Swedes.Turn 5: The Swedes stabilize their line at the redoubts by taking one of the redoubts under construction and their cavalry flanking maneuver on the far left is being met by Russian infantry.Turn 6: The Swedes renew their assault in an attempt to take a third redoubt.Turn 7: The third redoubt falls and the Swedes are able to contract their lines. Russian infantry push the Swedish cavalry on the far left back to the stream.Turn 8: The Swedes push hard and weaken the fourth redoubt while the Russians attempt to collapse the Swedish left flank.Turn 9: The Swedes take the fourth redoubt but the now the full pressure of the powerful Russian infantry is upon them.Turn 10: The Swedes circle their forces around the 4 hard fought for redoubts. The Russian morale begins to falter as they make one last push to crush the Swedish invaders.Turn 11 (Swedish): The Swedes rally their remaining forces around the 4 redoubts.Turn 11 (Russian): With one mad rush at the Swedish line the demoralized Russian army forces enough casualties to demoralize the Swedish army.The Swedes manage to hang on to win this one with both armies demoralized earning a Marginal Victory.Casualties were heavy on both sides of the battlefield. [...]

Session: The Italian Campaign: Salerno:: Approach to the Winterline Session 2

Sun, 04 Dec 2016 23:35:31 +0000

by ropey We left off with the Brits Ops Comp having crossed the river twice, but also receiving a bloody nose. I forgot to add 2 spoiling points to the track for those SLs last session, so do so now.Clark is anxious to get American boots across the river, so despite the lack of armoured support [this is ridiculous so I brought on the 751st TBn] the 3rd ID prepares to Assault the 3PzGD regiment (asset). If they have any luck I can move the other two American IDs up in an Advance Op. Neither of the other two Divs can do an Assault so only the 3rd ID is named to this CDO. (A CDO may still be worthwhile just to get the bonus, and has no additional cost.) Paying for the Assault moves the OT through another reaction box, but nothing has changed for the German so they do nothing. The time track moves on to 14/10/43 AM.3 ID HQ (7-1=6) generates 42 points and the Tk Bn adds 8. (= 50). There are no adjacent units to add Tac Support. The HQ adds 4 AFs. (= 54). The SP is not used.The defenders have an asset rating of 7 but 1 SL so generate 14 points. Adjacent units cannot add Tac Support to an asset, and the asset is not stacked with a divisional unit so can’t receive AFs either. Hmm. The SP has been used already.Final odds are 54:14 = 3.93. The combat will be on the Lowland + River (ie, 2) terrain row at 3.00:1. 751st TBn contributes 2 ABs but the defender also has 1 (= +1) No HQ so no defensive HQ ABs. Terrain of 2 is subtracted. (= -1) The Corps bonus of +1 is used. [Dang, did I use this correctly in the Brit attacks?] (= 0) All units of an ID takes this back up to a final DRM of +1.A modified roll of 3 [jeez, does this die have any more pips?] means a 1/2 result. That’s a disruption and a SL for 3rd ID, AND another spoiling point, but the defender must disrupt AND retreat opening another bridgehead. However, the German can now conduct a Counter-attack using the 3 spoiling points. Only one Div can be named to such an Operation. 26th PzD is on 3 SL so can’t generate many offensive points – just 20. Even with the asset this isn’t much of an attack! HG is in the same boat. 15th PzGD is only on 2 SL but not positioned for a CA. HG could, however, potentially use the opportunity to extricate its regiment from a precarious position between two bridgeheads. This is testing ZoCs to the limit. The Op allows penetration from weak to weak only, but all hexes around it have strong projections. The only hope is to find a controlled hex – that is, one whose friendly ZoCs are double that of the enemy. 2215 seems to be OK – it has 19 German ZoC strength against 8 US. The regiment could move freely into that hex then on to the HQ. The HQ would be flipped to its fatigued side. It seems worth the effort so the German expends the 3 spoiling points, moves the unit and flips the HQ. (Other units could be moved but we chose not to.)The turn continues. The US have two unused Divs, and two more IPs. Clark pushes for action so they declare a Manoeuvre CDO, which costs just 1 IP. Again, the CDO costs nothing and allows the Corps support to be used. Losses to the 3rd ID mean they stack lower so 34th ID can move up to the river but ZoCs must be checked to see whether the 34th can enter. The bridgehead allows one regiment to slip across the river at road rates, while another stays on the friendly bank. The third can only move closer. 45th ID also moves, repairing the bridge at Benevento as they go, [...]

Session: Dungeon Hack: The Dice Game:: First Playthrough with Quests and Revised Rules

Sun, 04 Dec 2016 23:35:23 +0000

by AnimalMkIV

Finally got the time to assemble the latest file set and give it a shot.

Really liking the new quests and revisions to the other cards.

Game Set-up

Quest Cards in Play

And so the adventure started. I immediately bashed down the door into the first room and faced a couple of minor monsters. No issues here, they were slain quickly and the next door skillfully picked open by the Thief.

Room number two revealed my first quest. Destroy the Master Guard and his minions. The first round was hard and I took the full force of the Master Guard's attack while blocking the Goblin.

Round two and I managed to attract a wandering monster into the fray, not what I needed. My initiative rolls were terrible as was my main dice roll and I took another series of crippling blows.

Round three and my Thief fell to the Goblin menace and the rest of the party was not far behind. This Master Guard is brutal!

Finally managing to slay the monsters, but barely alive, I freed the prisoners and looted the treasure. A magic bracelet that would heal 1 wound each round, fantastic! I fear it may be too late as I enter the next room and come face to face with another Goblin and an Ogre.

I managed to deal some damage, but alas, the dice were not on my side and the Cleric fell under the heavy onslaught from the Ogre. This adventure was over quickly.

That was brutal! I was getting no decent dice rolls at all! The last couple of rounds produced a lot of Thief ability icons which were of no use. So many monsters dealing 4+ damage and I rolled high on nearly every roll along with losing the initiative rolls. I know the Master Guard did me for 7 damage twice!

Session: Battle Cry:: Abu Klea 1885 -- the Gatling jammed and the colonel is dead

Sun, 04 Dec 2016 23:35:06 +0000

by pete belli Abu Klea 1885 -- the Gatling jammed and the colonel is deadAbu Klea was a fascinating battle fought in the Age of Imperialism. During the 1885 expedition to relieve Gordon at Khartoum a small brigade of British soldiers known the Desert Column was attacked by a large group of Mahdist warriors. Both armies suffered heavy losses in a battle that demonstrated the finest military qualities of each belligerent. The dramatic narrative of Abu Klea was immortalized during the Victorian era in a poem by Sir Henry Newbolt: The sand of the desert is sodden red,Red with the wreck of a square that broke;The Gatling's jammed and the Colonel dead,And the regiment blind with dust and smoke.Never mind that the weapon was a Gardner gun, not a Gatling. The square was only fractured (never actually broken) but the colonel was killed after a heroic struggle and the sand of the desert was definitely soaked with blood.The column of approximately 1500 soldiers was moving across broken desert terrain in a loose square formation. Thousands of Mahdist infantrymen swarmed out of a wadi or dry riverbed to block the route to the wells at Abu Klea. Five groups of Dervish warriors attacked the British.The playing surface was created with the desert terrain Memoir '44: Breakthrough board. The map in not exactly to scale but I kept the firing ranges short to simulate the dust and smoke on the Abu Klea battlefield. Terrain tiles include hilltop hexes and the wadi embankment... this steep obstacle slows movement.The column was composed of detachments from some of the finest regiments in the British Army plus Royal Marines and a small group of sailors known as the Naval Brigade. While the elite 19th Hussars retained cavalry horses the majority of the Desert Column (which included both infantry and cavalry units) was mounted on camels. Everyone fought dismounted because the camels were not good firing platforms. There was an inherent weakness in the brigade. The cavalrymen were unfamiliar with infantry weapons and tactics. The infantrymen were fighting in small groups which had never served together. Many of the officers were strangers to the men. The column was described as "the Nile Circus" and "London Society on camels" because a number of socially prominent officers had joined the expedition seeking glory and adventure. British commander Major-General Sir Herbert Stewart was a competent professional thrust into an extremely fluid (and dangerous) situation. His performance was solid. Bravery on the battlefield cost Stewart his life later in the campaign. Each faction of the Dervish army (Berber tribesmen under Abd el Majid, Metammeh Arabs under Ali wad Saad, Baggara cavalry, etc.) is represented by color-coded figures. The special Mahdist command rules for this scenario incorporate these tribal allegiances. During each turn the Mahdist player can activate all of the formations in one faction of his choice and also play a command card. This scenario uses my hot deck of command cards to keep the action flowing. Events include the "Rally" card inserted in the middle of the deck to signal a pause in the action while both sides gather stragglers and regroup and the "Short of Supplies" card to end the session if the battle continues until sunset. This artillery unit represents a battery of three 7-pounder "screw guns" designed to be taken apa[...]

Session: Cosmic Encounter:: How I got hooked

Sun, 04 Dec 2016 20:29:15 +0000

by sceb I'm surprised I haven't posted this already, but here's the story of my first game of Cosmic Encounter. And later on I'll also post the story of my (more clearly remembered) second game.So my first game of Cosmic Encounter, I was introduced to it by a friend, and we played it over Tabletop Simulator. At first I was worried about whether or not I would enjoy it, and my fear was based solely on the fact that it was described as "a negotiation game". Boy would I would be pleasantly surprised. I actually kinda wish I could go back and watch myself play (and soon-ish after the game, I actually did, since she streamed it, but that recording's gone now) so I could laugh at my own mistakes now that I'm more experienced.To be honest I don't really remember everything about it, but what I think I do remember is that it was a four player game with myself, my friend as the host (thanks for buying the DLC!), and two of her friends. The host went through the aliens and hand-picked a selection of aliens to use for a game with new players and I remember that I had heard about at least a little bit of the game before and for whatever reason I was hoping I would get Tick-Tock. As if anyone would ever pick that to be a possible alien to use in an introductory game. No idea why I wanted Tick-Tock, guess it helps that I didn't fully know what their power actually was other than that it somehow involved "patience" (which, you know what, now that I think about, it really doesn't! Why is "limits the length of the game" the power of an alien themed around patience?) and I thought "Oou, I can be patient!".I ended up picking Remora. Another reason I wish I could go back and watch myself play is that I'd love to know which alien I passed up. I'm always weirdly curious about which alien someone, especially a new player, passes up! I think it might have been Human. The host picked Mutant, and the other two picked Oracle and... Void. I remember after the host showed the selection of possible aliens, I was really hoping to myself that I would get Void, but I ended up quite enjoying Remora. And of course us new players immediately labeled Void as "scary", ended up frequently allying against Void despite the terror and risk, and Void ended up rarely winning. Tense every time though ("Oh god, please play a high attack card, please..."). To be honest I'm glad the host picked Void as one of the possible aliens. Guess she knew we would be able to handle it ("You'd be surprised, he's actually kinda weak"), and fear can be fun!Other moments and tidbits I remember... I remember hearing that Mutant's power involved drawing from the deck, smiled as I thought it would go great with my ability, then hearing that Mutant could draw from other player's hands instead of the deck and immediately going "oh". I also remember playing plague against the host since she was in the lead and also the one with the most experience, then quickly realizing the folly of plaguing Mutant. I remember already appreciating the value of compensation and tried to get a good amount of it, though if I remember correctly not ONCE did anyone ever try to make a deal. And I remember not really thinking when inviting allies, and how despite understanding the value of compensation I didn't really think of how playing a negotiate when someone allies with you is pr[...]

Session: Terraforming Mars:: Tharsis Republic squeaks out a 2 pt win over Econline in a 4 player drafting game

Sun, 04 Dec 2016 17:21:42 +0000

by Norbert Chan After a two week break, I got to play Terraforming Mars again. Ken, Jean and Don were playing a practice game before I arrived. I was dealt Phobolog and the Mining Guild. My 10 starting cards were steelworks, Noctic farming, research outpost, electro catapault, asteroid mining, peroxide power, mining herbiovores, birds, and brius networks. I kept 7 of them, throwing out the last 3, since they could not be played right away. My plan as the Mining Guild was to progress up on steel production with an eye towards the mining award. Player order was Ken (Tharsis Republic), Don (Ecoonline), myself and Jean (Invertrix).Ken got down a first turn earth catapult (for 23 M€, get 2 M€ for each card played). This card had won for Gary the last time we had played. I played peroxide power losing 1M€ production but gaining 2 energy production. I needed the energy for my cards (the action card I had required 4 energy to gain 2 steel and 1 oxygen, and I needed to get that up and running). Don played space mirrors and corporate stronghold. Jean played power plant and Mohole area. Around turn 3 or 4, during the draft phase, I got dealt the AI central (with 3 science tags, after you play this card for 21 M€ as an action you can draw 2 cards). I hated to let it go, but I only had 1 science tag, so I passed it on. It got to Ken, and he had a lot of science tags, so this helped his game as well. Don claimed the mayor in turn 4, I claimed the builder in turn 5, and Ken claimed planner in turn 6, before Don could get this third evergreen tile down. I funded the miner award soon after. Don looked like he had the advantage. He had the viral enhancers and every time he played a plant tag card he got to add a microbe. He had animals, microbes and predators at once, and a large number of evergreen tiles on the board. Ken was drawing 2 cards a turn with AI central so it was hard to tell who was winning, but it appeared to be Don’s game. Jean funded the thermalist, while Don funded the landlord. Ken could have funded the scientist for 20 M€ but chose not to as he needed the money. In this game, the oxygen got filled up quickly, then the temperature. It was the oceans that needed to be put down to end the game. I got the arctic algae which helped me put a few evergreen tiles on the board, though much later than everyone else. The game ended on Ken placing the last ocean tile. Scores:Ken 93 (31 TR, 2 landlord, 2 thermalist, 2 miner, 5 planner, 6 greenery tiles, 14 city, 31 cards),Don 91 (30 TR, 5 landlord, 5 mayor, 11 greenery, 15 city, 25 cards)Norbert 85 (35 TR, 5 miner, 5 builder, 4 greenery, 10 city, 26 cards)Jean 63 (32 TR, 5 thermalist, 6 greenery, 7 city, 17 cards).Ken is red, Don is green, I am yellow and Jean is blue. Don beat out Ken for the landlord award, but Ken wins by 2 pts. Ken’s card points got him the win: het got 5 pts for the card for every 3rd city and there were 15 cities. He also got second on all the funded awards, which showed he had a really good production. Don was close, but I think Ken’s AI central allowed him to draw the VP cards quicker than we could. Ken's winning tableau allowing him to get second on all three of the funded awards. His steel/titanium was close to mine, his heat was second to Jean, while his tiles on the board w[...]

Session: Wing Leader: Victories 1940-1942:: Solo scenario V04

Sun, 04 Dec 2016 17:21:21 +0000

by provence

Making my way through the scenarios in order so now I am at V04.

This was the setup:

This was a terrible fight for the British. Right at the start, the German fighter squadron split into a flight and took down a British squadron.

The rest of the battle went equally badly for the British. They learned the hard way that, with the advanced bounce rules, it's a bad idea to ignore veteran German fighters and just focus on going after the bombers.

Even the last Spitfire squadron that came in late in the game, climbed high and dove on the German bombers, was on able to achieve a disrupt before itself being broken. I think it rolled snake eyes on cohesion (image)

So final score:

3 (bombers making it to England but one was disrupted) + British 7 losses = 22 VPS

3 German losses (1 fighter and 2 bombers) = 5 VPS


(image) Great narrative
(image) Lots of action
(image) Looks great
(image) Except for the paper map
(image) Many little rules that are hard to remember so I am never quite sure if I am playing correctly. I am getting better at it as practice makes perfect.

Still on the fence about getting Wing Leader: Supremacy 1943-1945 and I want to decide by tomorrow if I jump on the P500.

+ On one hand the new GMT high quality map would be great. And also the new end of war planes and scenarios.
- On the other, there are so many scenarios in [thing=160418] that will I ever make it to volume 2? And there is an inexpensive new expansion called Blitz on p500.

So should I splurge on Wing Leader Supremacy? What do you all think?

Session: The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game:: Flight from Moria - a doddle...

Sun, 04 Dec 2016 05:33:19 +0000

by Beejer2000 This must be one of the quickest quests ever... I am just starting out on my LOTR quest experience and have succeeded so far to Khazad-Dum. I am using a dwarf deck primarily because I like it, but it is quite thematic for Khazad-Dum and an obvious choice to defeat the threats. My current deck list, see at the bottom. Setup:Plundered Armoury shows up in initial setup. Drawn Hand Erebor Record Keeper, Gloin, Steward of Gondor, Celedrian's Stone, Haldir of Lorien, Dwarven Tomb.Round 1:Drawn Durin's song to keep my dwarves motivated and responsive to what the quest throws at them. Cast Erobor Record Keeper from drawn hand, reduced my threat by one thanks to Nori and quested with him, Ori and Nori against a Plundered Armoury which showed up in the setup. The Quest Deck revealed a Blocked by Shadow which I gambled for - what would I lose? The quest just started. The gamble paid off with only a Stray Goblin showing up and I was awarded with 3 tokens for the quest due to Dain Ironfoot's bonuses for his fellows. Next, I am travelling to the Armoury to remove it from the threats. This is looking like a promising start!Round 2:Drawn Fili. Always a welcome party guest early on in the game. First I am awarding Dain with the Steward of Gondor title and immediately replenishing the resource tokens by exhausting the title. Then I am using those additional resources to make Ori a mega-questing hero with Celedrian's stone and I am going for broke by throwing in all three dwarves (except Dain of course) back into questing. 10 will power against the now-not-so-threating Nameless Fear (at 2). But a Dark and Dreadful treachery lets the Record Keeper stumble and fall into the discard pile and leaves me short with his well-needed 2 will power to finish this in a "one-two=gone-game". Still, got rid of the Armoury and totalling 7 quest tokens now.Round 3:After refreshing and drawing Self Preservation, Dain uses his title again to pump up his resources. Fili and his friend Kili make the stage and the threat is back down at 28. (Thank you Nori!). With an improved quest party of Kili, Fili, Ori and Nori and a whopping willpower of 12, I withstand even Fili falling into a Sudden Pitfall, I bypass the Blocked Shadow and run for victory with another 6 quest tokens.PointsFinal threat level = 28, 1 damage each on Ori and Nori, after 3rd round and 2 victory points for A Presence in the Dark. Thus totalling to only 58 points for this quest! Happy days! Beejer.Main DeckHero (3)Dain Ironfoot (Return to Mirkwood)Nori (Over Hill and Under Hill)Ori (Over Hill and Under Hill)Ally (25)2x Bifur (On the Doorstep)1x Brok Ironfist (Core Set)3x Daughter of the Nimrodel (Core Set)2x Dori (Over Hill and Under Hill)2x Dwalin (On the Doorstep)2x Erebor Hammersmith (Core Set)2x Erebor Record Keeper (Khazad-dûm)2x Fili (Over Hill and Under Hill)3x Gandalf (Core Set)2x Glóin (On the Doorstep)2x Kili (Over Hill and Under Hill)2x Longbeard Orc Slayer (Core Set)Attachment (9)1x Celebrían's Stone (Core Set)1x King Under the Mountain (On the Doorstep)2x Narvi's Belt (Khazad-dûm)2x Self Preservation (Core Set)2x Steward of Gondor (Core Set)1x Unexpected Courage (Core Set)Event (17)2x A Test of Will (Core Set)2x Ancestral Knowledge (Khaz[...]

Session: Morocco:: First time with 3 players where I was winning the entire time...until the end.

Sun, 04 Dec 2016 04:11:30 +0000

by dexdouglas I played this with Madison (purple) and Kyle (yellow). I was white. The start of the game had me going third. Madison and Kyle both went for 4 point juice tokens that were on the bottom row and I went 1 row higher, getting 2 & 3 point tokens but trying to stake a claim where I could spread my market tiles out and get a good end game bonus. Madison scored her tile she was working on, and Kyle scored his but I got to be 2nd on both of their stalls so I was able to get some nice bodyguard and coin action. I closed my stall in the next round and then tied with Kyle to make sure he didn't get 2 stalls next to each other. Mainly when I game with Kyle, he wins so any chance I can get to hinder his progress in a game, I'll take it. It didn't hurt that it was scoring me points too but I could have spent my time building my stalls out further as opposed to horning in on Kyle's territory. Either way, I got a few more second places, which was fine but it didn't help branch my stall territory out. Soon enough, I had blocked out Kyle's starting stall but my starting stall still had one space open to grow. While I had switched gears and started blocking Madison, who quickly formed 3 contiguous stalls, Kyle jumped out into the top middle left and started perching himself on 3 & 4 point tokens. I was worried, but figured I'd still have enough time to stop anything too crazy.I had both of my tourist tokens still available and on the round BEFORE I was first, I setup both of them on the last open stall next to mine. Then the next round came and nobody could stop me from completing it! Success! It kinda sucked because there was no overflow so I spent 4 turns trying to close it but I thought it was worth it with the double tourist action. I moved my two new assistants on to the next tile up. I was soon going to close that tile and have a 3 contiguous as well with room to grow! Nope, Madison dropped her bodyguard down and negated it all turning it into a neutral stall. That really bummed me out. Kyle, on the other hand, had proceeded to start his string of closures he had been building up. 3 stalls were his in quick succession, and a fourth he tied for first. He scored a LOT of juice that round. Kyle had previously been complaining about being in last place which I recognized as typical Kyle banter to get people to stop picking on him. It didn't work on me but I think it did work on Madison. She started closing stalls around me and I went back to work on Kyle. At this point, the board was starting to close up. Madison had to pass because she had nowhere to go with her cubes and no coins to spend. All of us had used up all our special tokens and meeples and all of our coins so things started to slow down. With minimal moves to make, the cube selection round became very tense. Trying to suss out what move Kyle was going to make and how I could block him or setup Madison to block him from connecting his 4 contiguous stall. It was a fun puzzle to work through and with the first player marker coming back to me after the round, I made the best moves I could and stopped Kyle with another tie. Unfortunately, the stall placement HAD to be oriented to a spot where Kyle got 2nd which gave him the all power[...]

Session: Pirates of the Spanish Main:: Tournament #2 continues with a CRAZY game

Sun, 04 Dec 2016 01:12:45 +0000

by a7xfanben Xerecs and I were able to continue the tournament! We played three games; the third one was possibly the longest (by number of turns) 40 point game I've been involved in. It was incredibly desperate and wacky - keep reading to see what happened!American Pirates (#6 seed) (commanded by Xerecs)vs.The Doldrums (#11 seed) (commanded by a7xfanben)Becalmed would soon prove to be a massive nuisance to the AP's, giving the Doldrums fleet a head start. The Eagle waited for the Roanoke in the fog, while the Banshee's Cry and Amity both docked at the same island. The Longshanks is already headed back with gold due to Hidden Cove.The Eagle managed to dismast the Roanoke and come to the BC's aid when the Amity rammed the BC! With their gunship out of action and no gold on their ships or home island, it would be a tough road back for the AP's in this game.The Eagle has sunk the Roanoke, while the Longshanks rams the Amity.The Eagle finishes off the Amity while the Bloody Jewel returns home with gold. The LS rescues the BC. The AP's manage some gold as the Bandido returns home, but it's only to avoid a shutout at this point. The Doldrums win 20-4!The AP's went first in the second game, but the Doldrums still managed to hit the Roanoke and Amity with Becalmed on their first turn. The Eagle stayed home, anticipating the Roanoke returning to her HI, while the Doldrum gold runners were wary of the dangerous American 5 master.The Roanoke instead headed west, prompting the Eagle to sail out. Suddenly 4 ships were near the center island! The Bloody Jewel unloads gold, while the Amity grabs some for the AP's.Shots fired! The Eagle wasn't able to hit anything with her first action, but by saccing she got lucky and took out 3 masts on the Roanoke! The Longshanks rammed the Bandido derelict, and combat was in full swing.Of course, in a game this small, it didn't last long. The Eagle used another double action to dismast the Roanoke, while the LS towed the Bandido.This led to a strange situation where the Eagle purposely didn't shoot at the Amity, since dismasting her would end the game. The Doldrums weren't 100% sure they had more gold than the AP's, so the Eagle sailed by while the Amity took some ineffective shots at the captured Roanoke. The BC engaged the Amity but failed her ram and was then dismasted.The game ended when the Eagle docked home the Roanoke; the gold and captured Commodore Perry gave the Doldrums a 21-8 victory! The Doldrums advances to Round 2! Becalmed was certainly a factor in the two games, but good dice luck and appropriate maneuvering by the Eagle also won the day. (The Eagle would have to receive the MVS "Most Valuable Ship" award for this series)The next matchup:Hai Peng Fort Frenzy! (#7 seed) (commanded by a7xfanben)vs.dakmor's swarm fleet (#10 seed) (commanded by Xerecs)(This was the crazy one!)The home islands were relatively close together. I was very excited to return to my HPFF fleet, which is a variant on the UPS strategy. Of the 16 ships the two fleets had on the ocean, none had more than 2 masts. Throw in only a single captain ability (Captain Jack Sparrow), and it looked like the series wouldn't feature much combat.[...]

Session: The Italian Campaign: Salerno:: Approach to the Winterline Scenario Session 1

Sun, 04 Dec 2016 01:12:01 +0000

by ropey Approach to the Winterline AARThis is a playtesting AAR for a Scenario I uploaded to CSW.I set up using the Sicily map for its tables, as the Salerno map does not have a CRT, etc! I guess I will need to make an A4 card with appropriate tables on it so any map can be played on its own. What the heck S&T? Anyway, since the map space can be printed on an A4 sheet I can use the Sicily map folded in half with the scenario map overlaid. Next step is to dig out the counters and set up as close to historic as possible. All mobile units for the Germans make them quite strong!Note that I will be using my own ruleset during this AAR.I setup the point tracks, splitting the Allies 3/2 to the Yanks’ advantage. Embarrassingly I seem to have used the SL markers in another game so will have to use the Medwar Damage counters and maybe hand-written counters if they run out. Oops.German setup didn’t leave many options. Note I have snuck in an Army engineer unit who will begin building fortresses if I have CPs to spare. The Allied setup should be straight forward .You will notice there are no US armoured units. Where are all the independent Tank Bns in the games? They appear to be factored into the HQ ABs, whether you agree with this or not – I don’t. I chucked in an Army engineer unit to balance the German one: I may need it to clear demolitions. By the start of this scenario Naples and the surrounding airfields were back to full functionality so they won’t be used there but in a campaign game they may have been busy and they can be used to repair bridges.7th Armoured Div consisted at this time of 4 AB, 22 AB and 131 Lorried Bde. I have used three mech counters from the pool to represent these. (How rubbish was the OoB for these games? Grr!)OK, I think we are ready to go. I roll for the weather – a 3 which is Overcast. Only half the Support Points available, rounded down, may be used this turn, so that’s 1 each for the three national groups. I use separate markers to reflect this. We check command control first so that we know who is available to an operation. This may influence your initiative bid. As we have just set up, there shouldn’t be any problems!Initiative bid. The Allies want to make sure they have the initiative so will have to bid more than the German player can (4). At any rate they wish to assault along the line so this will take a fair CP expenditure. 5 CPs at least would have to be spent to support the Corps HQs to get a support from each of them. The plan is for both Corps to conduct a CDO assault so that the timeline movement and German reaction is minimised – I may need time to get through the German line. This again requires at least a 5 CP bid but would leave nothing for follow-up, so I will bid 7 CPs with the Allies. The Germans are expecting to be hit hard and will need some Reaction Points, even though they have no real reserves on board. They will need to keep CPs for the 3rd PzGDs moving up and for refits, both in the Strategic Phase. They bid 2 CPs knowing they don’t have to convert them both to RPs anyway. The Allies win the Initiative, reduce their CPs by 7 and moving the IP track to 7. The Germ[...]

Session: Moscow '41:: AAR_Defending Moscow

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 23:33:42 +0000

by senseidragon After having played several Moscow '41 games against Ultimo - this is my 5th - I know exactly what his play style is and tricks and tactics I should be aware of: he is a very aggressive and fearless player, thus I have developed a special strategy to employ his boldness on my favour. But first, I have not to end each and every Impulse - and Turn - under his pressure, because otherwise it will be hard to catch up later on. So - as the Soviet - my first goal from July till the Mud season (the famigerate Rasputitsa!) is "Survive and fight another day!"Considering the hystorical event of the Wehrmacht and the Red Army during this campaign, I know I will not be able to conduct a large scale attack or keep the initiative, but I will have to be good to turn every situation in my favour. That said, I will have to be careful to what he does with the Initiative Disk, and hope to get it very soon! I must avoid getting caught in one of his nasty traps. The one I'm aware and I should look out is a double pincer which closes a large pocket. I can sustain losses, but I do not want my army facing a mass surrender.If he plays the Disc for drawing Reinforcements, I hope he does not get the 4th Panzer Group's Blocks to speed up the road to Leningrad, nor the Luftwaffe HQs that is gonna help him taking down my defences, nor Bush - which could help him seizing the Valdai Hills (I need those height in my planned November offensive!) nor - even worst - Von Weich to attack me from the south (Kiev). With this all said I think he will try to circle lot of my troops in the centre, and then I don’t know, he could give Guderian green light to take the road to Moscow straight, or liusten to the Fuhrer going first for Kiev like he did last match. I have to hold the line until October where the mud will halt his moves on his trails and I will be able to estabilish a solid line, so my army can rest and replenish before launching the winter offensive I have in mind.Then, once in December the LW will be drawn away (to Africa) and the Blizzard comes, I will some good time.I hope, at least...Consideration Pre-MatchIn a scenario so open and wide my range of move can be various but the terrain will not help to defend my positions leaving me to count on smart moves and DLs. Considering the terrain I’m very confident he will attack me where the green areas are trying to make his way towards Kiev. Also I need to be very careful to a possible attack on my right side otherwise I will be trapped between the two armies and he will cut my supply line coming from Leningrad. I know that my only two HQs are on the extreme part of the map which will lead to a problem if he decides to break on the centre, will cut the connections between my HQs and the central troops.July.Ultimo surpises me opening with a never seen "Guderian fashion" opening move.He starts attacking the Central HQ troops then he leaves a block on Smolensk to prevent any of my troops to move there with a Pass. Velikie Luki suddenly comes under heavy attack. [ImageID= 3283361large]My troops risk to be encircled and I can’t let that happen, it would be losing power and le[...]

Session: War of the Ring (second edition):: A History of the West,(in Newspaper Quotes.)

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 23:27:46 +0000

by luckydogwilson Middle Earth Geographic : Mount Doom no longer Dormant!Imladris Inquirer: Research Team Dispatched to Mordor. Hand picked specialists to investigate... Rivendell Reporter: Why you should leave for Elvenesse. Voice of the Wizard: The Horse-lords are Your Enemy.The EYE: WAR! (full mobilization ordered)Tirith Times:Gondor Needs her King Now!Shirespeak:Peregrin Took finds cabbage shaped like a....Mark- the Word : Gondorian King Claimant visits Garrison - Historic meeting between Prince Theodred and Aragorn Telcontar (sketches on page 5).Voice of the Wizard:Two Tarks with One Stone! Our Courageous Wolf riders today surprised the enemy forces guarding the fords......Tirith Times:Taken Too Soon - All Gondor Grieves.Daily Palantir:BETRAYED! Action Demanded against "White" Wiz. (Feature spread:  your own White hand picture  to burn in the streets!)Middle Earth Geographic: Team Delayed by diversion. Volcanic activity blocks Moria? (L. Greenleaf recalled to Woodlands over "procedural" differences)The EYE: 33rd Regiment breaks previous speed record on Northward march.Imladris Inquirer:Elrond Admits – Valar asked to InterveneRivendell Reporter:No need to pack just yet.Mark - the Word: "Deep Trouble" - Enemy forces investing the Hornburg, overwhelmed the...The EYE: Cut Down to Size: Following an inspiring speech by the Witchking, our Northern army destroyed the Elven Woodland Realm.Mark - the Word (Final Edition) : Golden Hall in Flames!ORKTALK: Elf Steak six new healthy ways to cook'em!Shirespeak:Bomba-trill! Old Tom croons his way back to the number one spot. (Tour dates, pages 3,4).Day of Dale (incorporating "Lake View"): King Brand Speaks:" ... I have to tell you I have received no such undertaking from the representatives of Morgul, and so I must announce that from 11 o'clock this country has been at a state of war." Middle Earth Geographic: Conference to be held in Lorien.Dwarven Nation: Appeal to help Refugees from Dale and Lake. - "Not our war" says Dain.Daily Palantir: “They” Are Coming! How to tell your Easterlings from your Southerons, and why it matters...Man About Harad: Corsair of the Year - the top nominees plus woodcuts of Miss Khand visiting front line troops.Middle Earth Geographic: Extinct Species Rediscovered! Mordor team makes exciting find en-route. A living fossil, foul-deepthingus, encountered by the banks of....the team have suggested "Gimli's Squid" as a suitable memorial...Tirith Times: Pelargir Falls, Coastal Provinces Assaulted.The EYE: Gothmog Honoured -Named to Lead New Army. Calls for "Maximum effort".Middle Earth Geographic:G Smeagol to Join "Doom" Expedition.Daily Palantir: "Dol-A" Saved in Epic Shoot-out They were good, but we were better says Prince. Gives hope for the Capitol.Tirith Times: Besieged! Middle Earth Geographic: "Doom" Report Out! G Greyhame - leader of the Mordor expedition announced that -Amon Amarth- and the risk which it posed- has been circumvented. Full Text page 3,5,6.Daily Palantir:Orod-ruined!ORKTALK (with editorial from The EYE) BLIND-SIDED! Investigation into safety protocol at Dark tower, were buildin[...]

Session: Rise and Decline of the Third Reich:: To Bremen or Not to Bremen...that is the question: Turn 1 - 1939 Fall Axis

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 17:32:49 +0000

by OU_Sooner First let me say that rokeater (Paul) is an awesome player. I hope you'll find this session report interesting. The outcome of the war hinges on whether or not the allies should risk a bold plan to invade Bremen in Fall 1939. Obviously, this opportunity is not available in every game. The German might end his turn with a 9 factor fleet and some air on Bremen. If he does, then this is not even a possibility. But if he does not...well you've got some really tough decisions to make on turn 1 that will decide the outcome of the game.Here's the initial setup.I noticed I forgot to expand the counters on Breslau. There is a 3-3 germany infantry there and the 5-4 air is on top. French setupI don't know what I was thinking with France. I saw the Italian tank there on the border and I remember thinking, "okay I've got to make sure I fill the gap (or for you Brits --mind the gap--) so Italy won't just attrition me and encircle my army down in southern France immediately." I got distracted and for some reason when I came back I left the gap open down south. Oops. I know better than to setup like that. I even authored a popular post on these forums about how to setup France. See I apparently wasn't thinking when I setup France this time. StartItaly declared war on France. No surprise there. Axis attrition in the west, attrition in the med, and offensive in the east.[Moves & CombatRokeater does his usual attack on Poland that minimizes his risk of losses and sets up Poland to fall on the 1939 Axis Winter turn. He wins the 5:1 attacks in Poland and has tanks on both sides of Warsaw. All the Polish men will be out of supply except the air and the guys on the capital. They will die on the Allied turn and then normally Rokeater will attrition Poland in Winter 1939 and then sea transport a tank from Kiel to Germany and move it 6 spaces onto the empty Warsaw. That's what he does and it works brilliantly.Paul is too good a player to not figure out if he can safely declare war with Italy and defend it from being defeated. He obviously realizes he can defend Italy and he's started that already during his movement phase by putting unnecessary air power down in Italy. With the French isolated, even if France kills that tank and frees the infantry in the alps, that would be turn 1 of an allied two turn potential move. Italy can properly defend itself from a northern invasion even though Italy can only spend 2 BRPs this turn on builds.The Italians, fresh off their declaration of war, take some real estate in Egypt. They also send some guys north into Tunisia presumably in order to launch an assault on the sparsely defended French colony in Winter. Or the axis might just attrition in Winter.At the end of movement it looks like this:Germany won both 5:1 battles in Poland without taking any losses.Axis rolled a 1 on attrition in the west so France lost the replacement counters.At the end of combat it looks like this: You may have noticed that when Germany advanced east of Warsaw that[...]

Session: Agricola:: Solo Game with SoloPlay Expansion and Variable Resource Cards

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 15:16:14 +0000

by DocSavage2001 I am doing a game of Agricola with the SoloPlay Variant that includes these Agricola Resource Cards that generate variable number of resources each Round depending on how many resources a space generates and how many resources are already on the space. They also affect Breeding in Harvest rounds. The SoloPlay variant also limits you to a selection of four random Major Improvements available instead of the usual full 10, BUT gives you a MUCH larger selection of Occupations, making almost the whole set available for Solo play, even the ones that normally are only used in 3+ or 4+ player games.Like Suburbia, I found the official Solo version of Agricola to be kind of boring. Other than the limited set of occupations and the minor improvements, every game felt the same to me. You always have the same production and all spaces available. I saw articles posted on BGG about optimal plays for the solo game to get highest scores, which made it seem like a math exercise. You had special rules to remember about food. It just didn't feel like the multi-player game.The SoloPlay variant with the variable Resource Cards and the regular conditions (2 food to start, 2 to feed each family members at Harvest) and the ability to use a LOT more of the occupations makes it WAY more fun to me. I haven't played Agricola in a long time. I was not/am not very good at it, in my opinion. But last night, I actually got a score of 52, which is a high for me and considered a Major Game Victory using the SoloPlay rules. I actually chalk this apparent success to a good selection of Occupations and Minor Improvements AND all the practice I've been getting at engine-building games I've played so much of this month like Terraforming Mars and Race for the Galaxy. OR I could have just been doing something wrong. I haven't played in a while. Here is my ending farm and the round by round play (if I did something wrong - assuming anyone reads it all - let me know):I used only the 'E' Deck for this game.Major Improvements Available - 2-Clay Fireplace, 5-Clay Cooking Hearth, Joinery, Basketmaker's Workshop.Occupations Available - Greengrocer, Brushmaker, Carpenter, Plow Driver, Clay Mixer, Thatcher, Chief's Daughter.Minor Improvements Available - Animal Yard, Cattle Market, Millstone, Baking Tray, Stable, Helpful Neighbors, Manger.Round 1 - Sow and/or Bake Bread:(1) Occupation - Greengrocer (free) (When you do "Take 1 Grain" action, also take 1 Vegetable)(2) Take 1 Grain (+ 1 Vegetable)Round 2 - Sheep:(1) Occupation - Clay Mixer (1 Food) (When get only Clay from a space, get 2 more Clay)(2) Take 1 Grain (+ 1 Vegetable)NOTE: Thanks to the variable resource cards, I still had NO resources on any of the "Add 1" resource spaces, so only Wood was available so far.Round 3 - Fences:(1) Occupation - Carpenter (1 Food) (When adding rooms, use only 3 of a Resource instead of 5, e.g. 3 Clay and 2 Reed to add a Clay room)(2) Get Clay (1 + 2 from Clay Mixer)Round 4 - Major/Minor Improvement:(1) Get Clay (2 + 2 from Clay Mixer) (2) Major Improvement - Cooking Hearth[...]

Session: Kettou:: Had a lot of fun with this!

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 15:16:06 +0000

by LazyJ

Didn't play enough to give a full review, but my brother had kick started this one and brought it over. We enjoyed it - it's got enough going on to be worth your time but not so much as to overstay it's welcome. Great theme and art really add to the feel.

The slapping mechanic is fun, and the die-roll keeps things light hearted and fun.

We grabbed the audio files off the publisher's website - which did a lot for both the atmosphere and for allowing us to play 2 player with no one else around reading off the cards. I will say that I hope this game does well enough that the publisher makes a simple app - playing mp3's on random is ok but not ideal. Excellent ambiance though.

Some parts weren't completely clear, so we just kind of made stuff up:

There is a Counter Kata that says "Deal as much damage as you were dealt" or something. We played in our game that this was pure reflection (as in, the defender takes no damage and attacker takes all), but afterwards wondered if it should be each player takes the same amount of damage. That card can be brutal if it's just bouncing damage off - I got a 6 hit attack poinged back at my full health Takeda and never really recovered.

We decided that taking another Combat card each turn was non-optional, even once all your Bushido slots were filled. You just have to discard something and add the new one each turn.

We also liked the Dishonor card... but mechanically it seems to be missing something, because rules as written seem to say you can discard it and replace it with another card before it ever has a chance to go off. We toyed with the idea of saying to discard it you also had to discard other Combat cards (+1 for normal, +2 for upside down).

All in all seemed like a great small box, take along kind of game.

Session: Maria:: My closest game yet

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 13:17:42 +0000

by 7downup

I must have played Maria a couple of dozen times by now. Last Saturday's game in Malvern was the closest result I've yet seen, so I thought I'd post it for posterity.

The game ran full length to the end of year 4, taking 3 hours. Countback of the winter scores showed France 16 (Chris), Prussia 16 (Bodhi), Austria 17 (Tim), Prags 24. Based on the tie breaker rule that France loses all ties, the game went to Prussia.

That said, every faction (except the Prags) got within one battle of an outright win.

A superb, tense, rollercoaster of a game, Maria at her best (which is very, very good). All three players in agreement; a great gaming experience. The streamlined game system fading into the background, so we could concentrate on playing each other.

So good that I decided not to go straight back into another game after lunch but instead went for long, thoughtful walk across the glorious Malvern hills, resplendent in late autumnal foliage and bright, low sun.

Cheers Richard!

Session: Sekigahara: The Unification of Japan:: I see your reputation is much inflated, Tokugawa-san

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 12:49:08 +0000

by NeedsNewDice I had the chance to play my first game of Sekigahara recently. This is a game that I had been interested in for quite some time, so I had high hopes for it. I wasn't disappointed. I played Tokugawa, but my fortune was not as great as the actual man's. My opponent plays games regularly. Neither of us are war gamers or had played Sekigahara. I had read the rules several times before playing. Setup is actually fairly quick, thanks to the excellent map that uses symbols to show you what blocks you are to place at designated locations. Rules explanation took maybe 20 minutes. We referenced the rules perhaps half a dozen times and were always able to find a concrete answer. We were never left with a situation where we had to make a ruling ourselves due to a vaguely worded passage. I consider this a hallmark of both good game design and good writing. The game took about three hours with it going to points at the end of the seventh and final week. The game hinged on a moment where I had a six block stack near Osaka, which was defended by only one block. I could have made it to Osaka, but decided against it because I would have had to burn a card for a forced march and I already had a smallish hand size. However, the next turn my opponent managed to bring three more blocks to Osaka and when I finally decided I had to attack I was facing stiffer opposition and lost the battle by two to three Impact. This was in the latter half of the game, and from there I wasn't able to recover. My opponent brought large stacks to surround the northern castle where he knew Tokugawa was holed up. Conducting a full movement, I broke that stack up and sent stacks to several different locations. This both slowed down his armies (as they had to stop to smash one-block stacks) and caused him to divert resources to chase what turned out to be a red herring. The game ended with Tokugawa surviving but losing the war 12-14. The last three weeks or so I simply didn't have the ability to capture any more resource points or castles. Several battles I had loyalty cards played against me that I couldn't contest and in several other battles I played loyalty cards that my opponent was able to contest. This made for some harsh moments!I really enjoyed the combination of concise rules that still allowed for important strategic decisions. Hand management is very important. It is very useful to make larger movements, but is it worth it to burn that card that could turn the tide of a future battle? It can also be very good to stack blocks of the same daimyo together (hey, know I can just work on trying to gain those cards!) but it can also be risky (damn, I only have two of those cards and a handful of useless ones now...).Loyalty cards are also key. Use them to early and your opponent may be more likely to counter them, but if you wait too long you may find your opponent steamrolling you. Overall, I'm happy with this purchase and look forward to the next game! [...]

Session: Warfighter: The WWII Tactical Combat Card Game:: A Ridge too Far

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 12:31:23 +0000

by CaseyN60 [Note: this is more a somewhat longish narrative than an actual session replay but I have tried to incorporate enough information that the actual cardplay is represented]AARDTG: 1731 local, 4 Dec 1941Location: Krasnogorsk, RussiaObserver: SS-Ostf. Braun, Unit: Attached to 99th Mtn Inf Rgt, 1st Mtn Div, 49th Mtn Corps, 2nd ArmyThe High Command intercepted a distress call from a Russian transport aircraft flying toward Moscowcarrying valuable information and passengers. The blizzard forced the plane to make an emergencylanding about 10km east of our position and I was tasked with assembling a small team to capture orkill the survivers and obtain as much intel as possible in support of Barbarossa Phase IV. It wasclear that help would be on the way so speed was critical.The team I assembled consisted of myself, SS-Scha. Ehrt and SS-Stm. Classen, true sons of theFatherland both. I served with Ehrt in France and knew him to be reliable and decisive. He wasa woodworker in Obaammagau and would often be seen carving trinkets as gifts to pass the time.Although I knew little of Classen, Ehrt recommended him, and his having grown up on the slopesof Mittenwald told me he was no stranger to the snow and cold. So with a sip of Kirschwasser (for warmth) and a verse of Das Lied der Deutschen (for spirit) we were off.We were driven to the edge of a small woods and set out on foot. We followed the road toward anearby stream and it was clear that the only way across was the one-lane bridge directly ahead.And through the Russian MG team guarding the far side of the bridge nestled comfortably behinda wall of sandbags with reinforcements not far behind.Ignoring the frostbite that was already affecting us all, Ehrl rushed the MG nest with his SMGblazing and was able to kill the spotter and force the gunner to take cover. A second bursthit one of the nearby troops and made sure that another one wasn't going to be an immediate threat. Classen tried to finish off the gunner but his shots did little more than further convince the gunner to keep his head down. I used the opportunity to zero in on the reinforcements and was able to kill two of them; even a blizzard won't stop a 7.92.I told Classen to scout ahead while Ehrt and I took care of the remaining Russians. I didn'twant to take the time but we couldn't chance having the enemy surrounding us with long-rangeMG fire from the rear. Classen reported back that there were two paths we could take. The firstwas over a frozen rise, which would undoubtedly intensify the bitter cold winds. The other pathwould take us near an old factory building. While the protection and warmth that the buildingoffered was tempting, I knew that the enemy would certainly be taking shelter there as well andwe simply didn't have the time to deal with an improved enemy position.As we approached the base of the rise we were immediately fired upon by a large squad of Russianregulars including one equipp[...]

Session: Mage Knight Board Game:: Solo Conquest with Wolfhawk and Lost Legion expansion

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 09:46:21 +0000

by DocSavage2001 I originally posted the items in this thread in the Solitaire Games on Your Table thread for November 2016. I busted out my Mage Knight box of goodies (Thank you, Harbor Freight sales, I think I got this PERFECT box for like $4.99 or something.):I will be playing the Solo Conquest scenario using the base game and the Lost Legion expansion. I will be using Wolfhawk (the new character from Lost Legion) who, for some reason, I keep on calling her everything BUT Wolfhawk. She's always Hawkmoon, or Hawkwind or WindWolf or something to me... LOL. Arythea will be the Dummy Player.Each round will be in a separate post in this thread.DAY ONE:Map: Tile A starting tile, with tile 13 to the left and tile 6 to the right. That puts a Lake and a Mountain right in the center so I am going to have to choose to go left or right as it won't make sense to try to go both ways when I need to find the Cities. The left tile has a Deep Mine (supplying Blue and Green Mana), a Magical Glade, some Rampaging Digger Orcs and a Mage Tower. The tile to the right has a Monster Den, a Red Crystal Mine and Rampaging Cursed Hags (Orcs). The Mage Tower makes my decision to head left.Mana Pool: Red, Red, WhiteTactics: I take 4 Planning, Arythea takes 6 The Right Moment. I get to go first and will draw 1 extra card each turn I have at least 2 cards in my hand.Turn 1: I use Tirelessness and March to Move 5 to the Deep Mine. I reveal Ice Mages in the Mage Tower. At the end of my turn, I take a Green Mana Crystal to my inventory from the Deep Mine and draw 3 cards. Arythea takes her turn and draws 3 cards and ends on a non-red/white card so she has 13 cards left.Mana Pool: Red, Red, WhiteTurn 2: I use the White Mana die from the Source and Swift Reflexes to move into and assault the Mage Tower (-1 Reputation). The Ice Mages are fortified and do Ice Damage. I don't have any Seige Attack and no Fire Block or Block 10, so I take the 5 damage and take 3 wounds into my hand. Then I use the Green Mana Crystal from my inventory along with Concentration and Swiftness to get Range Attack 5. I play a March card sideways for +1 Attack to get the 6 Attack I need to kill the Ice Mages. That gets me 5 Fame and I level up. Before I end my turn, I play Tranquility to Heal one of the 3 Wound cards.At the end of my turn, I take my Combat Reward, a Spell from the Spell Offering. I take Offering! Not only is it a Spell I find useful, but it keeps a chance of a Red crystal ending up on Arythea's card. For my Level Up, I take the Skill Motivation (Flip once a round to draw 2 cards) and the Advanced Action, Magic Talent. I draw 3 cards. I have six, two of which are Wounds. Arythea's turn is draw 3 cards, again, no red or white, so she has 10 cards left now.Mana Pool: Red, Red, WhiteTurn 3: Use Motivation Skill to draw 2 more cards. Take a Red Mana Die and use Improvisation (discarding Crystalize) to generate Move 5, which is enough to get [...]

Session: Star Wars: Imperial Assault:: Sewers of Nar Shaddaa

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 05:17:00 +0000

by quigman

Played this skirmish mission last weekend.

I used

Kayn Somos
Heavy Stormtrooper

Grand Inquisitor
Elite Stormtrooper

I was against

Elite Echo Base Trooper
Wookiee Warrior
Rebel Trooper
Rebel Saboteur

I tried to stage a 2 pronged attack. 1 with Kayn and heavies and regular stormtroopers to the north and 1 with the elite troopers and Grand Inquisitor to the south.

The rebels went east and south, but mostly straight into the central water/garbage room.

My elite troopers didn't last long against sab blasts and wookiee swords with Luke providing the re-rolls.

Kayn and his gang up top had a solid round 3 knocking off some troopers...who were swiftly reinforced the next round (image)

Inquisitor was good with his saber throw and got both wookiees down to half health fast but ultimately had to keep his distance. Mak was sniping the elite stormtroopers well.

Eventually, it was the grand inquisitor rushing towards Luke for a super focused attack ignoring the wookiees flanking him that decided the match. The Grand Inquisitor swung his saber...and completely whiffed on the attack...I think 1 damage ended up getting through...that was ultimately the beginning of the end...

Wookiees tore strips off the not so Grand Inquisitor and while he tried to run away, Luke finished him off with a rifle shot to the dome.

Kayn did what he could...but it ultimately was Luke cutting him down with a saber that finished him off in round 6.

All in all, that rebel list was damn strong! Luke providing attack re-rolls for multi figure deployment cards...ouch!

The health of the wookiees is incredible, they wouldn't die!

Lessons learned...Grand Inquisitor is big...but if he can't do damage he's wasted...I think he'd do better picking off the troopers/sabs/Mak with saber throw as opposed to going head to head with Luke and Wookiees and that's still only 1 attack with hopefully cleave...I feel as though another elite stormtroopers would be stronger with multiple attacks and attack re-rolls etc.

Anyway, was a fun mission!

Session: Eclipse: Shadow of the Rift:: 4 Player Game

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 03:57:37 +0000

by JeffreyKnoll Daryl (Pyxis, gray), me (Lyra, beige), Shu (Mechanema, white) and Nikunj (Hydran, blue) played a game of Eclipse. We played with both expansions, but we took out the evolution technologies and developments. We played with 2 alien homeworlds between me and Daryl and Shu and Nikunj.Board Around Turns 3 or 4:There were 2 improved hulls available, so Daryl and I picked them up. More improved hulls came out pretty quickly, so their shortage was not an issue this game. We were all impressed with Daryl’s ability to both explore and upgrade his ships with the same action. Playing Lyra, I tried to build a wall between me and Shu, but unfortunately, Shu got a wormhole through. To my surprise, Shu offered a trade agreement with me, which I eagerly accepted. Daryl was also surprised by this offer.Nikunj was expanding well. He found a good amount of tech worlds and was able to build his technology very well. He also walled himself off between him and Daryl. He also had a good wall going between him and Shu. I did a terrible job trying to block off my faction from the others. I had a direct connection to Shu. I had 2 connections to the center. I had a 3rd direct connection to Daryl. Plus I had 2 warp points which connected to Nikunj’s territory.Daryl had the most interesting first turn. He built a cruiser and put improved hulls on both his cruiser and interceptor (2 on the cruiser and 1 on the interceptor). He then moved 1 ship of each into an ancient world. Nikunj, rolling for the ancients managed to destroy Daryl’s cruiser and Daryl retreated his interceptor. This was a serious blow to Daryl and the result would leave both me and Nikunj in peace for the first half of the game. Board at middle of turn 5:On turn 5 I built 2 dreadnaughts and moved them into an ancient homeworld. I rolled terribly for myself and Daryl rolled very well for the ancient and I ended up losing one of my dreadnaughts. This was probably my most vulnerable time because I was short on resources which I needed to build shrines. I was happy however to get a +5 technology discovery there.Daryl explored the neighboring hex and found an orbital. He also connected this hex to my territory. I had wormhole technology from my shrines, but this wasn’t a big factor in this game. Daryl then offered a trade agreement with me, and I was surprised but I eagerly accepted. Daryl takes his trade agreements seriously and I didn’t think he would break it. This meant I only had to worry about Nikunj attacking me.Board at the middle of turn 6:Nothing much happening at this time. Shu built 2 dreadnaughts preparing to take the northern alien homeworld. Daryl was also building a big fleet. Shu successfully conquered the alien homeworld and got a drive that allowed her to jump to neighboring hexes even if they don’t have a wormhole connection. She[...]

Session: Last Blitzkrieg:: Rutan's Full Campaign AAR - Day 6

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 03:56:54 +0000

by Rutan 21 December (Turn 6)Normal, Poor, AnyAllied Air Points: 0German replacements are 3AV, 1 Tiger, and 8 non-AV.Allied replacements are 9AV and 12 non-AV.The Allies win the first player roll, and choose to activate first. The clouds have rolled in and the mud has dried up; not the weather that the Allies were hoping for. The bulk of the US infantry replacements go to the 82nd, who also receive some much needed Tank Destroyer support.82nd Airborne DivisionFatigue: FreshSNAFU mods: 0Activation: Pass7th Armored is abandoned to try and make its own way out, while forces are pulled back north to defend against 1st and 2nd Panzer, and to protect the 82nd’s own MSR from Lehr. A barrage kills 2 steps of KG Krag (to 4). Fresh status is lost and there is no 2nd activation.1st SS Panzer DivisionFatigue: FreshSNAFU mods: 0Activation: PartialKD Knittel places a recon OBJ on Trois Ponts, drops support on the 2/401 east of the village, and leads an attack that captures the hex and sends the defenders back to 0719 with a step loss. This now clears the road to allow the HQ to advance. The III/1 battalion drives off the unprepared 2/120 and takes the trail north of La Gleize, though with Traffic in the hex. The HQ relocates forward and both bridges over the Ambleve between Stoumont and Aywaille are captured intact. Tanks and infantry move to threaten the 82nd supply line. Fresh status is retained, but a 1 is rolled for 2nd activation, and the division is unable to launch a planned attack to cripple the Airborne.3rd Armored DivisionFatigue: 0SNAFU mods: 0Activation: PassReasoning that tomorrow's reinforcements can deal with the threat of 1st SS Panzer, the 3rd Armored has two options; a strike against the open rear of 116th Panzer, or a drive south to engage Lehr and recapture Houffalize. In the end I decided that the 116th was over-extended and would wither away on its own. 3rd AD was ordered to retake March-en-Famenne en route to Bastogne. The city is retaken and a 2nd activation is gained.Fatigue: 0SNAFU mods: -1Activation: PartialThe advance continues along clear roads, approaching within 10km of Houffalize by the end of the day.KG PeiperFatigue: 1SNAFU mods: -2Activation: PartialAn opportunity is spotted to open a northern supply route to 116th Panzer, but Peiper’s HQ is badly deployed, and he take all morning to drive for Stavelot, restricting the advance of his impatient units. A 2nd activation is gained.Fatigue: 1SNAFU mods: -1Activation: PartialUnfortunately two partial activations is not enough to overrun the 82nd's Train and open supply through Werbomont. Two battered remnant battalions of the 82nd are sent to the graveyard however. Fatigue remains at 1.30th Infantry DivisionFatigue: 1SNAFU mods: -1Activation: FailA flip is taken to reduce fatigue to zero, and the unprepared units near Stoumont flip to their dep[...]

Session: Leningrad '41:: AAR - The Battle for Leningrad

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 22:00:00 +0000

by senseidragon INTROI was invited by Ultimo to play test his most recent game, Leningrad ’41, now on Kickstarter and still in final development. I admit I have never played a war-game before, I love tactical and strategic games (either on computers or tabletops ) so I accepted the invitation of Ultimo and now I’m here talking about the several matches we played.I have to say that I'm an aggressive player that tends to attack often and put pressure whenever he can. I understood very soon that I had to adapt my playing style to the historical situation forcing me to play a defensive game using the Soviet army. The beginning of the game is pretty straightforward, although the set up varies in an interesting way. The map shows icons for where types of pieces set up but there is some random draw about exactly which pieces go where. For example, one German corps might have three armor units in it, each of somewhat different strength. The map show three areas where the corps’ armor sets up but which unit goes into what area is random. Likewise the Soviets have some “remnant” units which are very weak when the game starts but could be built up with replacements over time. The Germans see an area with two Soviet “blocks” but have no idea what their strength is—it might be 2 pips or 4 pips or 6 pips. The combination means there is no “perfect first move” like I read about in some other games. This captures the chaos of the campaign at the point where the game begins. Both sides have to deal with some confusion. I read that this was one of the elements of Moscow ’41 which gamers really liked and that concept is here again for Leningrad ’41.CONSIDERATION PRE MATCHHaving already played with Ultimo some matches using both sides, his play style is aggressive and he tries to create double forks putting in danger different areas simultaneously, that will force me to heavy protect my second line otherwise he will put me in the condition to threat two areas very far and I will not be able to use my HQs if I don't keep them with stars. So guys try to keep the HQs starred without activating them all together. I'm expecting from him an attack on Velikiye Luki in order to get the control of the area and being able to put stronger troops on his draw bag. Even though he could detach the 18th regiment in order to attack Tallin trying to get the Baltic control. Another possibility could be he moves in wedge formation like Napoleon toward Pushkin and Leningrad. I will have to adapt my strategy to the situation but I'm confident he will push toward Velikiye Luki. JULY '41In the beginning of our game, the Axis tramples most everything in its path. Valga and Rezekne are surrounded and have little chance to hold the line, but some good dice leave me with some troops on two key areas. The Finn[...]

Session: Warfighter: The WWII Tactical Combat Card Game:: WFWWII playthrough

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 21:33:18 +0000

by PandaBall WFWWII playthroughMission Country StrollObjectiveRescueThis is my 6th mission of the Polish Campaign.Forces: PS Werner skills Pistol & SMG, Local Knowledge, Agile, Pitcher, Survivor.Equipment: MP40+extra ammo, Web gear, Helmet, Canteen, Binocs, Pistol, 2xGrenades, Smoke, Comfort box, Chocolate bar.NPS: Ehrt and Kraus, Squad: Frank and Winkler.Total 50 Rp with the +2 jam rules.Turn one: I expend my Comfort box and Canteen to increase my hand size by 8 cards. I then play Farm drawing Hostiles Small Truck, Rifle sqd and Reserves. I spend an advance to send Kraus into location who throws his grenade against the Reserves, 2K 1S. Werner now plays Flanking attack to enter Farm throws grenade expends 1Xp for Pitcher skill +2. Kills Rifle sqd. Rest of troops enter into Farm and attack Small Truck 1K 1S. Werner uses last action to steady aim and kill reserves. No hostile reinforcements.Turn Two: Due to bad rolling it takes 8 actions to get one kill result on the Truck! I use scrounge to get 3 grenades back. No hostile reinforcements.Turn Three: I have now burnt through my bonus cards though I have gained 5Xp. I use Local knowledge to place Crops (nature move timer back 1) hostiles Reinforcing & harassing forces plus event (+2 to location entrance) now up to 4.Werner uses Binoc to give Kraus extra action. Werner then uses move out to to enter crops and throws grenade +2 pitcher 3K 1S v Reinforcing. Kraus moves back throws greande and fires at harassing forces 1K 1S. Rest of troops enter crops and kill last reticle on Reinforcing. recruit reinforcements appears.Turn four: Kraus kills harassing forces and moves back to Farm. The Troops deal with recuits while Werner uses Clear orders and Stay Low by filling hand twice. No hostile reinforcements pay to retain Clear orders.Turn Five: Use Local knowledge to play Ruins. Hostiles Screening and Small Truck. Werner plays Flanking attack (3 cards) preps fire a grenade with pitcher +2 hits screening 2K 1S then refills hand. Troops enter in but fail to cause any kills. No hostile reinforcements.Turn Six: The screening force is finish of screening and a Steep slope location is placed, hostile Cavalry which are suppressed. I have to use Over watch to destroy Truck. No hostile reinforcements.Turn 7 Werner uses Binoc to give Winkler extra action who kills Cavalry then moves into steep slope. Werner then uses 2 hand refills to move the NPS and Sqd into the Steep slope. No hostile reinforcements.Turn Eight: Werner moves into slope but Binocs fail so decide to wait a turn to activate objective (this was a mistake).Turn Nine: Objective activated I have 3 turns to complete. Hostiles Harassing Forces, Dug in, Rifle sqd and Screening. But there is also an event Straffing attack I expend 3 Xp but lose a turn now only 2 left an[...]

Session: Advanced Squad Leader:: AAR: MM03 - The Jews Have Guns!

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 15:24:42 +0000

by RoadJT3 (SPOILER ALERT!! This After Action Report contains tactical observations which some players may prefer to discover for themselves).After a long wait (my fault), Jackson and I finally played this small scenario from March Madness '10 - Irregular Forces Pack. It plays across the width of two heavily overlaid half-boards over six turns. It is set in April 1943 when German SS troops and their Ukrainian allies entered the Warsaw Ghetto for the final “relocation” of the Jews. However on this occasion the Jews were not going quietly. The ZOB (Jewish resistance) made a brave stand and rebuffed the first advances at numerous prepared positions, even ambushing some light armour with home made bombs and molotov cocktails.The scenario begins with entry of the Axis forces moving forward into the Ghetto where hidden partisans lie in wait. The Axis have more punch (10 squads / 3 AFV’s vs 8 squads), but the OT AFV’s are vulnerable. We really have to know the infantry vs AFV rules here. There are a lot of fun rules in play like molotovs, magnetic mines, street fighting, RB cellars, sewers, fortified buildings, roadblocks etc. The ZOB have a myriad of ambush possibilities, with overlays creating a tightly packed mass of buildings without safe paths forward for the AFV’s, and only one continuous road straight up the middle. The Axis are required to run the gauntlet over the length of the playing area to a single orchard road exit hex at the end of the central road. Here they must exit a good portion of their total force. The light AFV’s are important with each having a value of 5VP. The Axis win immediately upon exiting 15 “CVP” (we read this as Exit VP) from hex 51I10.Jackson started his advance carefully scouting ahead with infantry (as the -2 CC modifier against OT vehicles could be quite deadly), using Searches to clear a way, but finding nothing in the first turn as I had no forward defence. One of his first moves of the second turn was a half squad which bumped straight into my first fortified building, revealing one of 5 squads concentrated in that hex. The ambush did not go well though. I was betting I’d get at least one good shot at a unit moving in the open and tie up the advance until the third turn before withdrawing the survivors. But even with the LMG and 9-1 leader adding hitting power I was only able to break one German squad and leader. The Axis began the turn in close so were able to assault move to adjacent hexes and gain encircling positions. I then had to rely on Fanaticism and Fortification, but fate was not kind, my kill force collapsed, and I was left with only three squads and a leader to hold to the end of the game.The general SSR prohibiting Partisans from forming multi-location firegroups is in [...]

Session: Hundred Days 20:: My first contact with the game (didn't go so well)

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 14:35:33 +0000

by Eawyne

This game is magnificent when displayed on the table. As usual with VPG's laser-cutting, even the counter sheets are nice, from the very beginning. I took some time to properly prepare the game, found a box to store the counters, put the map under the plexiglass (a task rendered difficult because the maps are off by half a milimiter !) , and set off to read the rules rapidly to get an idea of what I was up to.

I wanted to get an impression of the game step by step : I opted to go chronologically, and started the setup for the Talentino campaign. First problem : I'm supposed to not shuffle a red-titled Event card in the deck, but on the very opposite page, it says I should. Okaaay... Another misstep was the ambiguity as to wether Bianchi was a unit counter or a leader. Quickly resolved. And I decided the red-titled card to be discarded for this time.

After reading the overviews of turns, both in the manual and the player aid, I noticed there was a little info missing : when exactly did the turn-marker advance ? It seemed obviously to take place after the Second player had finished his actions, but nonetheless, I would've loved a clear-cut mention of this. That's where I found the lack of index to be a huge problem here. At least, make an index of those first-time-showing terms that are dark-red coded !! This is beyond logic...

Strangely enough, I had to struggle a lot to locate some key informations, like what a 2/1 means on Murat's purple box, or what those colored stars are for on the map. Actually, I didn't even find my answer for Murat ! Just devoting a page to make a clearer description of the icons and components would've been great. As it is, I had to skim through the manual(s!) multiple times to try and locate those little bits of missing info. The irony being that the little green Point-of-interest flags have a mention on the map, as having NO effect on the game ! Should've used that ink for some other infos... This correlates with a clearer - but missing -description for components : I only found out what the LOC's where in the Routing section of Combat. There again, it should've been indicated earlier, on a description of the maps.

So, after that first attempt of playing, I decided to store it all back, and come to it later. I had lost way too much time in identification and pondering, and had only executed some movements so far. I didn't venture furhter than my first encounter in combat, as I couldn't determine if Murat was indeed Commanding my fighting unit or not.

Session: Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game:: Boomerang Squad Mission Debrief: Secure Holonet Receiver (HotAC) Take II

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 10:43:07 +0000

by drathbun Secure Holonet ReceiverMission Background: A rebel spy has been sending intelligence reports from her Imperial squad.Primary Objective: Identify and secure the rebel communications channel by escorting a HWK-290 on their mission.Boomerang Squad Mission Participants:Slo-Mo (Y-Wing), Chulo (X-Wing), Foh-kus (X-Wing), Broheim (X-Wing), Gutz (HWK-290), and Sam (X-Wing)Boomerang Squad had been moving in the right direction. Our second attempt at capturing an Imperial officer went very well. That mission was preceded by a successful sweep of a minefield, clearing our supply routes. Two missions in a row in the win column! But, as a wise smuggler once said, "Don't get cocky, kid." Our squad was once again tasked with escorting Captain Harris in the "Osprey" out to an Imperial holonet communications cluster. Our goal was to identify a specific channel in use by our rebel spy and secure it. We had made the attempt at this mission once before and failed. With our more experienced / better equipped squad we hoped for better results this time.When we arrived at the communications cluster, we unfortunately found that Imperial forces were already in place. Not only were they already in place, but they were reinforced with an extra shuttle! Things were already looking grim.In our previous attempt we did not manage to identify the proper channel until every single component had been checked. This time we were lucky! We found a signal tagged by our operative on the second turn. Based on prior experience, we expected Imperial reinforcements, and we were not disappointed. A second shuttle with two TIE Interceptor escorts appeared. Now we had two shuttles to avoid and a mess of TIE's all over the place. With six members of Boomerang Squad and 12 Imperial ships, the encounter area was one big mess.To make matters worse, the agile but normally fragile TIE Fighters refused to die! Even with Predator instincts our squad was having problems taking out the lower skilled TIE fighters. By the time Gamma Squad arrived we had taken out a whopping two (yes, two!) of the pesky TIE pilots. Yes, we had already identified the communications channel, but we had to run to avoid being caught in crossfire from two different Imperial shuttles, not to mention those stealthy Interceptors...And then things started going downhill. Fast. Foh-kus was the first to lose his ship. He survived the ejection, but failed to gain any experience from the mission. Next round Sam went down, and he lost his astromech in the explosion. The "Osprey" had lost all of her shields due to hits from the Interceptors, and Broheim was looking a bit beat up.A round later, with none of our squad close enough to Protect the Osprey, she [...]

Session: Sentinels of the Multiverse:: Lone Gunman Fanatic

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 10:41:11 +0000

by Orntt

I've really been getting into Sentinels of the Multiverse on my phone recently; I'm no great fan of co-operative games, but as a solo game it's really working out for me. I've gotten myself to the point where I can take basic villains pretty easily with a 4-hero team, and am just starting out on the advanced versions.

This time around, I played a team of Freedom Six Tempest, Rook City Wraith, Redeemer Fanatic, and Bunker against Citizen Dawn (advanced) in the Ruins of Atlantis. Citizen Dawn is one of the harder villains for me, because I always default to killing her citizens instead of herself, which isn't always the best course of action.

Unfortunately I went down this route in this game too; after Dawn's initial assault, the heroes set to work on her citizens. I was trying to control the timing of her flip, but an ill-timed The Kraken pushed her over the edge very quickly. A Devastating Aurora came out soon after, so I decided to try and wait out her flip with one-shots and then clean up with Fanatic's End of Days.

This turned out to be an awful decision; I ended up spending about 4-5 turns twiddling my thumbs while Dawn slowly rebuilt. The environment cards were doing a sufficient amount of damage to her citizens to keep her from flipping back for some time, and all the while they were plinking at my heroes.

Eventually, things got to dire straits. Dawn's citizens took out Tempest, Wraith, and Bunker, but she finally managed to flip back and Fanatic cleaned up with End of Days. Fanatic also had a full grip of cards from liberal uses of her power.

I then realised that I had absurd amounts of recursion at my disposal, due to the incapacitated effects; I could put Aegis of Resurrection back into play every turn with Wraith, and wipe the board every turn with End of Days (putting it back into my hand with Bunker). The combination of these effects meant that I was near-invulnerable; Dawn herself could not do 10+ damage a turn to me, so it would take a particularly poorly-timed Devastating Aurora to do me in.

This lasted for some time, but due to the abovementioned near-invulnerability, I was never in any real danger. Eventually I drew Wrathful Retribution, and started hitting her for massive damage (and then cycling it back into my hand with Bunker). After three hits, she went down - a most surprising victory, considering she had been at full health when Fanatic made her last stand!

Session: Arkham Horror:: The Crawling Chaos Annihilation (session report)

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 04:26:21 +0000

by Scarlet Witch Played one more time today, Nyarlathotep and Black Goat of the Woods vs Hank, Patrice, Zoey, Ashcan and Mandy. As usual, AH, DH, KH, BGotW and MH in play. Setup was rather miserable, with no weapons or items of particular relevance appearing; Patrice managed to become Member of the Book Club with Hank, tho, which was nice.So, clues were not supposed to be a problem in this gate, and with Mandy in the mix, a few extra rerolls for key moments were granted. First gate bursted at the Witch-House, with two flyers appearing and moving, leaving an opportunity for Hank to dive into the gate. Patrice went shopping to start working on her PS, and got an Eltdown Shards (one item we houseruled a lot of time ago to be bound to be returned to the box after using, otherwise with Pete in the party, you'd easily keep the doom track at zero; Eltdown is crazy enough with Members of the Book Club already); Mandy resolved an encounter at the Curiosity Shoppe allowing her to draw 2 Common and 2 Unique Items for all investigators to buy. Needless to say, one of the items was Press Pass, and Patrice bought it. At this point Nyarly officially applied for political asylum at the Onyx Castle in Kadath, but found all rooms already booked by the other AOs, scared of Patrice.Next Mythos was Nightmare Pool (at least something to keep an eye on), and in the Uptown Streets we got a Dark Young, and a nearby gate at the Woods (Kadath, what a coincidence) with the Wailing Wither waiting. Zoey takes care of the Dark Young, and then in two rounds, we manage to clear away the Rumor, getting a few good weapons from the Common Item deck as reward. In the meantime, Hank returned and sealed the Witch-House; we got to keep an eye on the gate limit, but for now it was ok, so, we invested one more round in keeping monsters under control, and we worked a little bit on the rifts in Kingsport (two rift tracks were about to fill).Still, luck was really on our side today, and of two monsters released by a crate opened at Neil's, we got a Serpent People and a Night-gaunt, so that an investigators headed to Kingsport to remove a rift progress marker then could get a free lift for the nearest gate. In this way Zoey hitch-hiked to the double Yuggoth / Another dimension gate in Dunwich. Hank hit his second gate (Graveyard, Abyss + R'lyeh) and Mandy her first (R'lyeh). First encounter for Hank was facing the face of madness (1 clue gained, 4 San lost), but the next encounter was just a Sta loss, so, he returned and sealed. Mandy had an easy life too, and with Zoey about to return, it's 3 seals on the board when the doom is 9.Could seem bad, but actually it's not: t[...]

Session: Barbarossa: Kiev to Rostov, 1941:: Battle Near the Dnepr

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 23:26:31 +0000

by Rindis For our second go at the East Front System, my dad and I went with "Battle on the Sea of Azov" in Kiev to Rostov, with him taking the Germans again. It had been more than long enough that there was confusion at first, as there's some very important errata for the scenario. (Notably, that the Axis has to take the two main hexes in the Tartar Ditch area to win, and that the Soviets start with 4, not 0, Mandated Attacks to make.) Worse, we didn't quite pin down just where the victory areas are in relation to the unit setup for a bit, and didn't realize the Soviets need to work to take territory, which got their offensive off to a slower start than needed. (I should have read my report on the last time I played this scenario.)It's a good scenario, and we had a lot of fun, but in its current condition the scenario is a little hard to play correctly.As it was, I knew I had all three 'must have' victory locations; I thought I had some number of the six 'need three' victory locations, but it turns out all six start out in Axis hands. Of course, conducting an offensive against an uncooperative Axis player can be difficult, since any weak parts of the line can be parked out of range of the infantry, which moves after combat. It not only took time to realize that I needed to go on the offensive, but that I would need to advance from the comforting line of strongpoints to do it (it's 1941, of course I'm thinking defensively as the Soviets; part of the point of the scenario is that Stalin didn't think very defensively). On the other hand, once engaged, being able to move any retreated infantry right back into position is handy.I probably also should have advanced across the Dnepr in the north, and braved being out of supply to cause problems for the Hungarians. As it was, my dad managed to repair the southern bridge after a couple turns, and the SS units helped to hold the line for the middle part of the scenario. He took the two Crimea hexes without taking any meaningful losses, but it did take time. Even so, a few units from there showed up on the line for the last turn or two.I've had some bad experiences with offensives in EFS before, and the early stages of the game wanted to confirm that. I took (light) losses for absolutely no gain on some poor rolls. Things got better later, and while I never took any of the victory locations that I was driving towards, I was causing about as many losses as I was getting, even with relatively poor odds attacks (getting up to 3:2 odds was about everything I could do). The little motorized infantry unit that is in the group that gets released halfway through was[...]

Session: Onirim (second edition):: Session #1

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 21:24:09 +0000

by ektopia

Received this in the post this morning and got playing...


To begin with, I thought that it looked too simple. The first two doors came out quite easily. That was when I realised that it wouldn't be like that for the rest of the game.


This fella crops up quite often! Turns out that I'm great at shuffling him back to the top of a deck. Laying key cards one move too early spoiled my momentum as did having to fold whole hands or from the deck... twice, which left me one card and two cards that I couldn't reach.

Love this one already. I can see that it's going to get plenty of plays. It's far too early to rate it but I'm going to do it anyway!

(image) Quick
(image) Beautiful art
(image) Plenty of relaxing shuffling
(image) Loads of expansions included

(image) None that I can see

It's recent;y been reprinted so it's great to get it after a little while. An initial play proves that it comes up with (image) (image) (image) (image) (image)

Session: Mistfall: Heart of the Mists:: Mother of Nightmares (4 hero solo)

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 18:28:00 +0000

by Weltenreiter Welcome to another session report and/or practical guide to cheese and trickery, this time versus HoM's Mother of Nightmares quest.With Heart of the Mists upon us, it's time to try out new quests and new heroes and new stuff; everything else (locations, encounters, enemies) has been mashed together with base Mistfall components though - I strictly treat this as an expansion to Mistfall and am not going to standalone it whatsoever.(I give it 1-3 reports until I've had enough of new-only Heroes and mix that up. The new quests are outstandlingly good though, will probably rarely go back.)Usualish format notes:- No narration, if you don't like dry technical detail, read something else.- I'm sort of without established format again, there's a lot of dense information in a new time system playthrough. So excuse some explorativeness regarding what info is needed and presentable.- In fact, I'll probably go way over the top in annotating Focus, Icons, Time OTs and Resolve this time while working out formats. Let me know which info is useful and which is clutter.- I normally don't list detailed trackkeeping of specific cards drawn, but I'll try at least listing hand at start of turn. Let me know if this is useful.Variants used:- Combined turns- Tuned Reward Deck. Well, MF and HoM are thrown together, and as recommended a few unusable/undesired cards haphazardly thrown out. This could be done better once analyzed.- Time-Cards-As-Events not used, the quest has events.Here is my table setup. Getting tight putting allies next to charters, may need to put them above with the enemies.Here is our Team:Aseke, with Segrys and Arivel allies (both do really well with Aseke's flipback power)Sigraed, no ally (would roast them)Durgen, no ally (don't think he'll need one)Valkea, Tarah the Knight (to efficiently help Valk's lack of multiattack)With some altered allies, it's the same team I used on my first test against Eredai (no report for that). This is mostly due to laziness, the team is not that great versus Mother of Nightmares (Sigraed doesn't handle its rest pace or end fight well) or in general (you really don't want to pair Sigraed with 2 other 4 base focus heroes, limits her ability to hog enemies to burn. She also wants someone who can tank at range because unlike Arani, holy hell can't she handle the heat she draws). Basically, it's Sigraed's fault.Three allies will start us at +3 Time, just over the 2 event, so that's one early bullet dodged.Quest notes: Impaired resting unless we discard cards to unlock location rest bonus, occasional discar[...]

Session: The Resistance: Avalon:: Organized Tournament Play [What to Expect]

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 18:27:49 +0000

by cyampagn For the juicy highlight of the session, you may skip to Game 4.Considering this was an organized tournament, I was looking forward to finally sitting in a competitive game of Avalon. It would be different! I kept telling myself it would be an experience.But what I saw that day could not be unseen. Just a bit of background: I play Avalon with my pals from college who would invite guests to join us. This extended group would then be the main standard with which I compare other players. And the level of play in that organized tournament was pretty shabby.To start off some of the players were a bit rusty on the rules. But that part was easily taken care of. Sitting among the group were very seasoned boardgamers. Eurogames and all. Regulars. So I know them, have been playing with them. Did not expect questionable play from them, but yet...All games were 7 players. Roles used were Merlin, Percival, 2 regular good versus Assassin, Morgana, Mordred.Game 1:Evil won by assassinating Merlin.I was on the side of evil. First quest (2p) was won by good, no questions asked. Second quest (3p) was again won by good. But in it there was this guy J - my evil teammate who played success. Alright, nevermind that. He was selected for quest 3 (3p) but this time he failed it. Still ok. When it came to the fourth quest (4p), which required two fails, I saw the team had not enough bad guys in it, so I rejected the team. It was a close vote, 4-3. I saw my teammate had voted yes. If he had voted no, the crown would have then been passed to him. Allowing him to select a team with 2 evil. Anyways I correctly read who Merlin was and guided the assassin to her. Evil won, I won.Pretty annoyed by J who missed out on the concept of momentum. Evil could win at the end, but still...Game 2:Evil won by assassinating Merlin.I was on the side of good. Regular loyal servant. First quest (2p) was won by good, no questions asked. Call it my good reading skills or whatever, but from the start I could see it in his eyes that L was the assassin. Hard to prove this, but I find that my plays on the side of Good are better than the average players out there because I noticed that I have the knack to read out who are the evil players from the get-go. This led me to carry the game, as I usually do when on the side of Good. I wasn't Merlin but in most of my games as Good I could carry hard enough despite in the role of a Regular loyal servant. Anyways, I was successfully filtered out to be one of the last 2 for the role of Merlin. But unfortunately L the Ass[...]

Session: A Feast for Odin:: My first Feast for Odin

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 13:05:32 +0000

by helena_poprad

I also received this game yesterday. Punching out took some time for sure, but I could not resist trying it out rightaway. I got pretty straightforward starting occupation:

137a Melee Fighter (Each time you take a “Raiding” or “Pillaging” action (on an action space or via an occupation), you can use spears instead of long swords.)

so with a little trepidation I focused on dice chucking. Bought me some nice ship and set sail. 1st raid was a --- failure! Got a bit scared about all this dice business but shook away my fears and plunged head on again! And --- I had a blast playing this.
Ships 16
Emigration 18
Exploration 20 -- Faroe & Iceland
Houses 0
Cattle 0
Occupations 6
Silver 0
Income 30
Crown 2

After game I analysed my "low" score. What could have been done better?
* I was very weary to use 4-viking actions. Seemed too expensive. But because of that I ended up with only 2 occupations played & pack of cards in my hand [not that these seemed that amazing]. Need to be more bold!
* On the similar note, sometimes I chose 2 super cheap actions only to see that I could have taken a similar 3/4-viking action that somehow combined them. Action board needs more ogling on, for sure!
* I think I feared negatives too much. Ended up covering all but that kept me wondering if I should not have taken extra island / shed, i.e. if two partially covered boards are better than one fully covered.
* Should pick my exploration more carefully. Explored 2 islands fully [I should have chosen more wisely, though as it was worth only 20 pts in the end. At least I was getting all these nice bonuses -- I think I covered only one of them - and it was round 6 or 7].


Sooo many questions!

Sooo many thing to discover!

It goes without saying that because of the above stated and also because the gameplay is actually FUN [when compared with my experiences with Agricola, a game forever written in my memory as the one most successful in beating me mentally down - and I am fan of Robinson Crusoe!] I am super happy with this purchase.

Let's get those B&C decks out of that shrink-wrap!

Thanks for taking time to read this, have a wonderful day!

Session: A Feast for Odin:: My first solo Feast - 121 points

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 13:04:54 +0000

by ssmooth My pre-game occupation card was the Shepherd, meaning that at some point during the game I'd be wanting to do a bit of sheep breeding in order to claim a couple of bonus tiles.I hadn't dared to attempt an additional island board in my first couple of learning games with other players, but I felt convinced that any significant improvement in my score was going to require that.Likewise, I had never gone a-pillaging in my learning games, but I'd been thinking it over and had come to the conclusion that Pillaging might be the best bargain on the table. A one-time outlay for a longship and three bits of coal which could then be used multiple times to obtain large tiles not needing color promotion? What's the downside to that?Before I had the coal to fill it for optimal Pillaging, I went Raiding once with my longship, and with a good roll and lots of stone to spend found myself with enough points to claim the "throwing axe," the 9-square grey tile with the stair-step shape. I looked over the islands available for exploration and decided I could use that to make a good start on Iceland. Thence to Iceland.One of the good reasons for working an exploration board is that it's fewer tiles to boost your once-per-round income in the early stages there than on your main home board. Another is the opportunity to get additional bonuses from surrounded spaces. With a longhouse there are also tempting bonus opportunities -- plus the interesting quality that it can be filled with red and orange tiles -- and when I drew an occupation card which would grant me a free round of bonus payoffs from the longhouse, that tipped me over into giving it a try. I did get bonus tiles from the longhouse three or four times (and ultimately filled in all but one of its -1 spaces without any green or blue), but ironically I wound up never playing the occupation card that would have given me extra.I'd had good results with animal breeding in my learning games, and since I was holding the Shepherd, I definitely wanted to get into sheep. In the second round I went to the four-Viking column to get a sheep and a cow at the same time. I got another sheep the next round and started breeding, but I never did get another cow. I never got around to promoting the sheep, but the cow eventually turned into my one big blue tile for my home board. I did go back to the four-Viking column to get 2 buckets of milk from that cow along with a square of wool, a 2x3 blue tile, and a coin.My only other[...]

Session: Alien Frontiers:: Alien Frontiers: Sticking to Basics

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 12:52:52 +0000

by SpaceAlien We only had time for a short, 2-player game today, an hour; so we further reduced conditions from 8 colonies to 6. I rolled high and opened with no resources, so gathering ore and fuel was a priority. Jordan, starting with 1/1, lucked into doubles and built an extra ship. When he also constructed a colony on the Lunar Mine ahead of me completing any construction, I feared an early set up for resounding loss.Then, I built a colony on the Asimov Crater (creating a faster build engine) and got an extra ship built...there was hope in my heart and 2-2 on the board. We were both lucky with doubles, so more ships were built. Jordan gained the Holographic Deploy to protect his resources, and I took the Alien City tech card. Hmm, that Decoy card would be better on my side, I thought. (And later stole it! ) The next territory to be claimed was the Burrough's Desert, by me...and I took the extra die. Then Jordan built there on his next turn and forced me to surrender a point and a die. Score: 4-3. The advantage of the Asimov Crater, plus all six ship-dice, helped me take the lead as we continued to battle over Burrough's Desert, because I also took two points from Pohl Foothills and a point with the Alien Sarcophogus. I had this 9-4 advantage when he rallied: he stole back the Decoy, then my monument (-2), and took control of that central desert (+2 for him). Ouch, that hurt.I stole every card back, and he secured his goods in the Null-Time Vault and played the Temporal Warper tech card to re-roll dice. But with the Plasma Cannon (tech card) and my discount for controlling Pohl Foothills, I was able to remove his dice at no charge and open up any spaces I needed. Ore was then easily available, and the Raiders Outpost. A lucky roll of a triple and boom...another colony is placed.Jordan countered by taking away my control of the Asimov Crater. He used his special access to Van Vogt Mountain/lunar mine co binned with re-roll to build faster (triples) ...the Colony Constructor. Now, it's timing. My building through the standard route racing his luck on re-rolls. There was just one, slight miscalculated move. He built that last colony ending the game, but no matter where he placed it we would just tie. End game: 8-8 Tie breaker: Tech Cards 4-2, my favor. 2nd tie breaker (not needed, just bragging): Resouces 4-1... He spent to build that colony, after all. [...]

Session: The Resistance: Avalon:: [Fail Plays] Played in an organized tournament. Was a joke.

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 12:52:35 +0000

by cyampagn For the juicy highlight of the session, you may skip to Game 4.Considering this was an organized tournament, I was looking forward to finally sitting in a competitive game of Avalon. It would be different! I kept telling myself it would be an experience.But what I saw that day could not be unseen. Just a bit of background: I play Avalon with my pals from college who would invite guests to join us. This extended group would then be the main standard with which I compare other players. And the level of play in that organized tournament was pretty shabby.To start off some of the players were a bit rusty on the rules. But that part was easily taken care of. Sitting among the group were very seasoned boardgamers. Eurogames and all. Regulars. So I know them, have been playing with them. Did not expect questionable play from them, but yet...All games were 7 players. Roles used were Merlin, Percival, 2 regular good versus Assassin, Morgana, Mordred.Game 1:Evil won by assassinating Merlin.I was on the side of evil. First quest (2p) was won by good, no questions asked. Second quest (3p) was again won by good. But in it there was this guy J - my evil teammate who played success. Alright, nevermind that. He was selected for quest 3 (3p) but this time he failed it. Still ok. When it came to the fourth quest (4p), which required two fails, I saw the team had not enough bad guys in it, so I rejected the team. It was a close vote, 4-3. I saw my teammate had voted yes. If he had voted no, the crown would have then been passed to him. Allowing him to select a team with 2 evil. Anyways I correctly read who Merlin was and guided the assassin to her. Evil won, I won.Pretty annoyed by J who missed out on the concept of momentum. Evil could win at the end, but still...Game 2:Evil won by assassinating Merlin.I was on the side of good. Regular loyal servant. First quest (2p) was won by good, no questions asked. Call it my good reading skills or whatever, but from the start I could see it in his eyes that L was the assassin. Hard to prove this, but I find that my plays on the side of Good are better than the average players out there because I noticed that I have the knack to read out who are the evil players from the get-go. This led me to carry the game, as I usually do when on the side of Good. I wasn't Merlin but in most of my games as Good I could carry hard enough despite in the role of a Regular loyal servant. Anyways[...]

Session: Dungeon Busters:: Crazy Dungeon Buster Last Minute Winner

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 04:24:59 +0000

by KingSlamma It was Thanksgiving afternoon after we had filled ourselves with turkey, sides, and desserts. I decided to pull out a quick simple game after playing to relatively long games.I was playing with my younger brother and parents.We cleared through the first dungeon quite easily defeating every monster that was thrown at us.At this point, my brother was winning, but not by much.The next dungeon is where craziness started.We pick our cards then flip them. My brother turns over a 1, the rest of us turn over 4s. That's right the rest of the table all pulled the same number. We all had a good chuckle about this, while my brother is handing over all of his red gems to the Spoils chest.Next monster comes out. We all show our cards. My brothers shows a 2, the rest of the table, by chance, show 3s. We're all laughing pretty hard about this while my brother is turning in his yellow gems.The fourth monster is pulled and guess what happens again, my brother flips over a 3 while the rest of the table flips over the exact same number AGAIN, 5s.Trust me, we did not plan this. We all just happen to be choosing the same exact cards.At this point, the table is in tears laughing so hard, except of course my brother.The fourth and final monster is pulled and my brother losses yet again, fortunately for him he had no gems to turn in.On to the third and final dungeon.We lost against the first two monsters because my mom and I both threw the exact same number, and again my brother had the low number.The third monster my brother shows a high number battle card but my mom and dad tied for the low card. They had to hand over blues and yellows.Finally, the last monster has arrived. Three people tied by throwing the same card, my brother throws a high card this time,and at the right time. The last monster was a weak one. My brother's card was just powerful enough to defeat the monsters. Since the rest of us tied, we didn't get any of the Spoils. My brother was able to collect the card reward plus the Spoils!After the game, we found out it was par of his plan! He said when he lost all his gems he realized he could get them back by continually throwing low, and hoping people would keep turning the same number battle card. Then at the very end throw high and win it all.We had very little success in this playthrough but still had a ton of fun. [...]